Parasocial Relationships

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  • Parasocial Relationships
    • Attachment Theory Explanation
      • The formation of an emotional bond between 2 PPL
      • There are 3 properties of adult attachments (Weiss)
        • Proximity seeking - reduce distance between P + attachment figure
        • Secure Base - With a PSR there is little chance of rejection + allows PPL to explore other relationships
        • Protest at Disruption - Distress following separation or loss e.g. Jeremy Clarkson
      • Insecure resistant PPL are most likely to have PSRs (Cole + Leets '99)
    • Evaluation
      • Mental Health: Intense-personal is linked with neurotocism (anxiety + depression)
      • Link to loneliness: PPL develop PSRs to deal with loss or loneliness
      • Loss of PSRs + attachment types: Cohen found that the loss of a PSR is similar to the loss of a personal relationship
      • Research: Schippa supports that people with high PSRs watch more TV
      • Culture: Schmid found that PSRs with Harry Potter characters didn't change with cultures showing that mainstream media characters influence PPL
    • Absorption Addiction Model
      • PPL can become absorbed with a celeb to get a sense of fulfillment. Addictive behaviour may take over to sustain PSRs
      • There are 3 levels of PSRs
        • Entertainment-social: Watch, keep up with, read + learn about the celeb
          • E.g. Learning the life story of X is a lot of fun
        • Intense-personal: More involvement + compulsive feelings about the celeb
          • E.g. I love to talk to other who admire X
        • Borderline-pathological: Empathy with the celeb + over-identification + behaviours
          • E.g. If I walked through the door of X's house they would be happy to see me
    • Parasocial relationships are when a P is attracted to a celeb who is unaware of the Ps existance


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