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Then A Miracle OccursFocusing on Behavior in Social Psychological Theory and Research$
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Christopher R. Agnew, Donal E. Carlston, William G. Graziano, and Janice R. Kelly

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195377798

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195377798.001.0001

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Grounding Social Psychology in Behavior in Daily Life: The Case of Conflict and Distress in Couples

Grounding Social Psychology in Behavior in Daily Life: The Case of Conflict and Distress in Couples

Chapter:
(p.368) 19 Grounding Social Psychology in Behavior in Daily Life: The Case of Conflict and Distress in Couples
Source:
Then A Miracle Occurs
Author(s):

Niall Bolger

Gertraud Stadler

Christine Paprocki

Anita DeLongis

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195377798.003.0019

In this chapter, the authors challenge the field to overcome its focus on internal states and behavioral precursors as a substitute for behavior, and offer instead a method for studying behavior in everyday contexts. Using marital conflict as a specific instantiation of an important social behavior, the authors describe the utility of daily diaries as a tool for the assessment of these behaviors. They argue that studying variability in behavior is as essential to understanding behavior as studying mean levels, and offer possibilities for statistical analysis of diary data that focus on such variability. The authors report a reanalysis of couples’ diary data originally published in Bolger et al. (1989) that focuses on questions of variability in marital conflict and reactions to those conflicts. The authors describe how this analysis of variability led to insight about couple conflict that was not apparent from their original analyses.

Keywords:   behavior, behavioral variability, close relationships, daily diaries, dyadic data, marital conflict, multilevel modeling, personality, social psychology

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