SAGE Journal Articles

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Finch, J. Mason, J. (1990). Divorce, remarriage and family obligations. The Sociological Review, 38, 219–246.

This article examines the relationships that continue after divorce and other relationship fractures. In–laws and children as well as friends are part of the network that must be re-negotiated. The concept of obligation is researched in various forms. Daughter-in-law to parents and former relative’s response to children and step-children are examined. Morality is another communication issue that is raised in terms of socially acceptable behavior. A vignette is used as a case study to demonstrate the situation caused by the ending of a relationship and boundaries.

  1. Discuss the role of obligation in the end of a relationship.
  2. How much is social convention a part of the continued relationship support?
  3. Explain the ways friends are perceived or divided after divorce.
  4. Discuss communication in terms of children and step-children negotiation.


Noller, P. (1985). Negative communications in marriage. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 2, 289–301.

This article is based upon research from videos of married couples. The verbiage is examined in terms of negative and positive communication. Most negative messages were sent with a smile and the non-verbals did not match the verbal communication. Serious and hostile messages were viewed as coded and much more aggressive in nature. Vocal variety and channels were more impactful than the actual comments and words that were expressed.

  1. Discuss the meaning of negative communication.
  2. How is non-verbal communication informing verbal communication in a negative exchange?
  3. Explain the coding in a negative response to a remark in a relationship.
  4. Discuss the aggression in a negative response that is coded.