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communicative relationships


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1. In interpersonal communication, the relations between participants. These may precede the interaction as social roles or established power relations and/or be established or modified (at least temporarily) by it (see also relational communication). Conventionalized complementary relationships involve normative objectives: e.g. to inform/to understand; to teach/to learn; to persuade/to decide; to entertain/to enjoy. Schramm argued that in familiar social scenarios, these relationships amount to an informal contract. Communicative purposes do not always match expectations, are seldom unidimensional, and can be subject to dynamic shifts. See also mode of address; relational model.

2. In relation to the readership of texts in any medium, see text-reader relations.

Subjects: Media Studies.


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