Attributions for expectancy violating changes in affectionate behavior in platonic friendships

Kory Floyd, Michael Voloudakis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Although affectionate communication is vital for the maintenance of close, personal relationships, it has the potential to generate negative as well as positive outcomes, which may in part be a function of what attributions are made for affectionate expressions. The present experiment applied principles of attribution theory to unexpected changes in affectionate communication within dyads of adult platonic friends. Results indicated that attributions are more often made for decreases in affection than for increases. Contrary to the prediction of the fundamental attribution error, all the participants more often made external, noncontrollable attributions for changes in affectionate behavior, and the intimacy level of the friendship moderated this effect. Finally, the types of attributions made were associated with a recipient's evaluations of the giver's affectionate behavior and his or her assessment of the giver's character.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)32-48
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Psychology: Interdisciplinary and Applied
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)
  • Education
  • General Psychology


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