Chapter 7 Other Need-Based Theories
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OTHER NEED-BASED THEORIES
The previous five chapters described a large set of communication theories founded on presumptions consistent with the two dominant experimental psychological movements during the first half of the 20th century, learning theory and Gestalt psychology; the two chapters following this will concentrate on theories following from the tenets of their successor, cognitive psychology. Beside these central traditions, the study of personality psychology has and continues to have many adherents, and their work has likewise had an influence on communication theory. I begin this chapter with four theories rooted in personality psychology, in which people are viewed as motivated to a greater or lesser extent by one or another fundamental characteristic, with their communicative behavior differing to the degree that they possess the relevant characteristic.
As the twenty-first century continues to unfold, the goal orientation of cognitive psychology maintains its hold on the bulk of experimental psychological work. However, two other movements have appeared, and their influence is likely to expand in the coming years. The growth of what is called positive psychology and an accompanying interest in examining the factors that lead to human happiness and psychological well-being directs attention to the importance of maintaining a healthy view of the self. The role of self-esteem ← 213 | 214 → maintenance as a motivator for communicative action underlies the next four theories described in this chapter.
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