Social Penetration Theory By Irwin Altman And Dalmas Taylor

1787 Words8 Pages
Relationships are like onions, they take time to open up and you have to peel layer by layer to get to the center. Life happens, people come and go and the relationships that are made happen over time. A relationship is built over prolonged exposure to someone and they do not happen over night. When you first meet a person most judge, they look at a person’s appearance, their behavior, and their overall attitude. But as time goes on and you get to know someone on a more personal level you learn whom he or she really is. This idea is called the social penetration theory. Irwin Altman and Dalmas Taylor established the social penetration theory in 1973. They created this theory to have a better understanding of intimate relationships between two people. The social penetration theory is important to the communication process because it looks at how relationships develop and how over time relationships evolve from where they stared by self-disclosure. With the social penetration theory as the main focus and with the support from communication studies, this paper is assessing the formation of new relationships.
Theoretical Discussion Self-disclosure is the voluntary sharing of personal history, preferences, attitudes, feelings, values, secrets, etc. with another person (Griffin, p. 97). As stated in the introduction Altman and Taylor look at relationships as an “onions.” The different layers are representative of different feelings of a person. When
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