HUMANS ARE PEOPLE, TOO: NURTURING AN APPRECIATION FOR NATURE IN COMMUNICATION RESEARCH
Arizona State University, AZ, USA
• Human social behavior, including communication behavior, is influenced by higher-order factors that remain largely unacknowledged in communication theory and research.
• Several communicative behaviors, including communication anxiety, conflict, emotional expression, and aggression, have strong biological ties.
• Most of the research on the biology of communication behavior is conducted outside of the communication discipline and remains unknown to communication scholars, even though the focus is on communication behavior.
• Ignorance of biology leads communication theory to be needlessly anthropocentric, offering human-specific explanations for behaviors that are not unique to humans.
• Communication research often ignores heritability and treats entities such as media and culture as though they were living organisms, when in fact they are human creations.
• Environmental influences such as enculturation, modeling, and media messages are powerful, but all environmental inf luences require biological factors to be effective.
A growing literature illuminates the biological and evolutionary antecedents, consequences, and correlates of communication behavior. With few exceptions, however, the researc is conducted outside of the communication discipline and remains unknown within the communication field. This essay offers illustrative literature reviews for several communicative behaviors and argues that the communication discipline should embrace, rather than ignore, the bioevolutionary factors involved in human social behavior.
DEFINING THE PROBLEM : LIFE BEFORE HOMO NARRANS
Who We Are
Biology in the Communication Field
COMMUNICATION AND BIOLOGY: A LOOK AT WHAT WE KNOW
Communication Apprehension/Public Speaking Anxiety
Public speaking is a stressor
Stress responses to public speaking vary individually
Affectionate communication aids stress regulation
Affectionate behavior acts as a stress buffer
Affectionate communication accelerates recovery from elevated stress
Increasing affection provides health benefits
Quality of marital conflict affects physiological health..
Physiological responses to marital conflict affect relationships
Social support has health-protective effects
Social support can aid stress recovery and healing
Social support can increase physiological stress
Emotional expression induces emotional experience
Decoding impairment influences physiology
BIOLOGY, WE IGNORE THEE AT OUR PERIL
Humans Are Animals Too
Parenting Is More Than Teaching
They Don’t Live Among Us
A WAY FORWARD
The End of Nature vs. Nurture
Using the Bio-Evolutionary Perspective
Conceptualize questions as bio-evolutionary
Craft hypothesis tests to rule out rival explanations
Consider context carefully
Collaborate when necessary
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Kory Floyd Keywords: Biology, Evolution, Social Behavior, Neuroscience, Immunology
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Keywords: Biology, Evolution, Social Behavior, Neuroscience, Immunology
Floyd, K. (2014). Humans Are People, Too: Nurturing an Appreciation for Nature in Communication Research. Review of Communication Research, 2(1), 1-29. doi: 10.12840/issn.2255-4165.2014.02.01.001
Biology, Evolution, Social Behavior, Neuroscience, Immunology
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