Communications and Relationships in Film Academic Level
In this paper, you will examine several central theories of interpersonal communication and apply them to the film of your choice. The focus will be on how communication is used to initiate, maintain, and terminate relationships, and will cover several theories of each stage. The film will serve as a vehicle for learning about interpersonal communication and relationships. You will analyze what the film has shown about the ways people relate to one another. You are expected to write a short, three to four page analysis of the film. DO NOT go under two and a half or over four and a half pages. Your analysis should include 3 different sections: a. Theories of Relationship Development Choose two of the theories of relationship development and discuss how your film illustrates these theories. Give several examples that illustrate each and be sure to explain why you think these theories are particularly relevant to the film you have chosen. Theories: -Attraction Theory: explains the primary forces that draw people together -Uncertainty Reduction Theory: argues relationship development is facilitated or derailed by participants’ efforts to reduce their uncertainty about each other -Predicted Outcome Theory: attempts to explain how reducing uncertainty can lead to attraction or repulsion -Social Exchange Theory: explains the develop- ment and longevity of relation- ships as a result of individuals’ ability to maximize the rewards and minimize the costs of their relationships -Equity Theory: argues that people are more satisfied in relationships they perceive as fair, that is, where their costs are balanced or ex- ceeded by their rewards b. Models of Relationship Development Choose one of the models of relationship development and explain how it is illustrated in one of the relationships found in your film. For each stage in the model, you should define it and give an example from the film. Models: -Knapp’s Stage Model: conceptualizes relation- ship development as a staircase. The staircase depicts relationship development as being composed of five steps that lead upward toward commitment: initiating, experimenting, intensifying, integrating, and bonding. It also portrays relation- ship dissolution as occurring in five steps that lead downward: differentiating, circumscribing, stagnating, avoiding, and terminating. In this model, couples at the relationship maintenance level of development move up and down the staircase as they move toward and away from commitment as a result of the fluctuation of their relationships. -Turning Point Model: nonlinear model that best captures the fact that relationship development can be bidirectional—that is, that couples move both toward and away from commitment over the course of their relationship. c. Maintenance/ Ending a Relationship Discuss either how one of the relationships in your film is maintained by the characters or discuss reasons that the relationship in your film will end (or likely end.) Be sure to discuss aversive communication behaviors that the characters display (if relevant) and provide specific examples. You will need an introduction and a conclusion in this paper and include examples that you found to be the most enlightening, controversial, or even possibly incorrect. You will be expected to discuss what individuals did, what happened, and why. Relevant communication theory and text material should be introduced for each example. You should write this paper as if you were going to demonstrate your expertise and knowledge to an individual that has little or no knowledge of communication theory. That “pretend reader” should learn a lot from reading your paper.
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