Interpretive Approaches to Interpersonal Communication

Edited by Kathryn Carter & Mick Presnell

Subjects: Communication
Series: SUNY series, Human Communication Processes
Paperback : 9780791418482, 272 pages, May 1994
Hardcover : 9780791418475, 272 pages, May 1994

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Table of contents

Mick Presnell and Kathryn Carter

1. Postmodern Ethnography: From Representing the Other to Co-Producing a Text
Mick Presnell

2. An Interpretive Approach to Validity in Interpersonal Communication Research
John Stewart

3. Hans-Georg Gadamer's Philosophy of Language: A Constitutive-Dialogic Approach to Interpersonal Understanding
Kenneth W. White

4. Dialectic of Difference: A Thematic Analysis of Intimates' Meanings for Differences
Julia T. Wood, Lisa L. Dendy, Eileen Dordek, Meg Germany, and Sharon M. Varallo

5.On Interpersonal Competence
Carina P. Sass

6.Discourse Without Rules
Kelly Coyle

7. Listening Authentically: A Heideggerian Perspective on Interpersonal Communication
R. Bruce Hyde

8. Interpretation in Unsettled Times
Debra Grodin

9. The Ethics of Feminist Self-Disclosure
Barbara L. Baker and Carol L. Benton

10. A Phenomenological Inquiry into the Relationship Between Perceived Coolness and Communication Competence
Leda M. Cooks and David Descutner



This groundbreaking book presents conceptual, theoretical, and applied chapters demonstrating the strengths of interpretive approaches in the study of interpersonal communication. It extends our understanding of interpersonal communication through the incorporation of interpretive and critical theory paradigms. Until now, no text has systematically described interpersonal communication and theory by drawing on insights from interpretive or critical theory approaches. The authors fill two contemporary needs: (1) they provide a collection of essays that raises theoretical and methodological issues in the study of interpersonal communication relevant to all researchers in this area of study, and (2) they present a general approach to interpersonal communication that has gained wide acceptance among practitioners and educators, but has been under-represented by advanced research texts.

Included here are interpretive and critical perspectives including phenomenology, feminism, hermeneutics, symbolic interactionism, semiotics, and postmodern ethnography. The book provides information that extends our understandings of interpersonal communication by demonstrating the ways in which interpretive perspectives can contribute to the development of theory and research on interpersonal communication.

Mick Presnell is Assistant Professor in the Department of Human Communication Studies at California State University, Chico.


Kathryn Carter is Assistant Professor in the Department of Speech Communication at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. She is the coeditor, with Carole Spitzack, of Doing Research on Women's Communication: Perspectives on Theory and Method.