Com200 Essay

712 WordsApr 30, 20143 Pages
Minimal language communication between couples More often than not, we assume that what we are trying to communicate to those close to us is easily comprehended. We believe this because we are familiar with the other person and feel there is a connection that allows us to communicate with minimal language. In fact according to Psychology Professor Boaz Keyser at the University of Chicago, most believe that communication between people they know well, as opposed to communication with a stranger, is more clearly understood. In a study Keyser co-authored he calls this phenomena “closeness communication bias.” (HealthDay 2011) However a study of 24 married couples indicates that the bias doesn’t hold up. An experiment was carried out with couples sitting with their backs to one another and stating phrases which weren’t exactly clear. Instead of them comprehending what their spouses were trying to communicate, they often totally missed the mark. One example given by study author Kenneth Savitsky, professor of psychology at Williams College in Williamstown Mass., indicates a married woman, who said to her husband, “It’s getting hot in here,” meant that she wanted the air conditioning turned up a bit. Her husband, however assumed she was really making an amorous advance. Savitsky attributes this to the belief that people who are close often think they are on the same wave-length, and as a result fail to carefully consider the other person’s perspective. On the other hand, we’re more likely to use specific language when communicating with strangers. Study co-author Nicholas Epley, professor of behavioral science at the University Of Chicago Booth School Of Business calls this the illusion of insight. Being close to another person creates the illusion of understanding more than true understanding. (Healthday 2011)

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