Article published in:Interpersonal Argumentation
Edited by Harry Weger, Jr
[Journal of Argumentation in Context 4:1] 2015
► pp. 63–86
Attachment style, serial argument, and taking conflict personally
Serial argument theory explains recurring conflict within personal relationships. The theory specifies that an arguer’s goals influence his/her tactics, leading to argument outcomes which include effects on the relationship. We extend this model in two ways. First we suggest that attachment styles predict serial argument goals. Second, we hypothesize that taking conflict personally (TCP) is an outcome of such arguments. University students (N = 682) completed a cross-sectional survey about their attachment styles and felt personalization regarding a serial argument they experienced. A structural equation model tested relationships between attachment styles, goals, tactics, outcomes, and TCP. Results indicated that attachment styles predict goals of serial arguing and serial argument outcomes predict TCP. The study shows that attachment styles have modest but statistically significant effects on goals of serial arguing in close relationships and that the tactics used in serial arguing predict the degree to which people take recurring conflict personally.
Keywords: attachment style, personal relationshio, serial argument
Published online: 08 June 2015
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