symmetrical relationships

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See also power relations; relational communication.

1. Interactional partnerships in a dyad based on relative equality of status and/or power and employing communication styles that reflect this (Watzlawick). Expectations and behaviour are reciprocal (see reciprocity). Differences are minimized and the behaviour of one person tends to mirror the other. These relationships may reflect affiliation but they can become competitive: compare asymmetrical relationships.

2. More broadly, communicational arrangements on occasions when the roles of sender and receiver are reversible, and there is constant feedback: see also two-way communication.

Subjects: Media Studies.

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