Embracing Complexity and Seeking Simplicity in Interpersonal Relationships: A Defense of the Subordination-Reactivity Hypothesis

Embracing Complexity and Seeking Simplicity in Interpersonal Relationships: A Defense of the... In the target article (Wanic and Kulik 2011), we proposed in the subordination-reactivity hypothesis that women’s (typically) subordinate role in marital relationships renders them physiologically more vulnerable to martial conflict, which may explain partly the finding that marriage generally benefits the health of men more than women. In that article, we noted that our hypothesis should be considered in conjunction with other ‘non-mutually exclusive’ relationship processes that also may contribute to the greater health benefit of marriage for men. The accompanying commentaries take issue with our article on the grounds that a) interpersonal relationships and health are multidimensional and complex; b) our subordination-reactivity hypothesis diverges from existing interpersonal theory and research; and c) it is “almost always” unwise to “pit” one explanation or theory against another. In this response we argue a) the indisputable point regarding the complexity of interpersonal relationships and health does not challenge the validity of our hypothesis; b) our hypothesis, as stated, is not logically inconsistent with the prior interpersonal theory and research cited, and c) there is considerable value to pitting explanations against each other when possible, and arguments to avoid doing so are at odds with fundamental scientific practices. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sex Roles Springer Journals

Embracing Complexity and Seeking Simplicity in Interpersonal Relationships: A Defense of the Subordination-Reactivity Hypothesis

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 by Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Subject
Psychology; Gender Studies; Sociology, general; Medicine/Public Health, general
ISSN
0360-0025
eISSN
1573-2762
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11199-011-0026-1
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

In the target article (Wanic and Kulik 2011), we proposed in the subordination-reactivity hypothesis that women’s (typically) subordinate role in marital relationships renders them physiologically more vulnerable to martial conflict, which may explain partly the finding that marriage generally benefits the health of men more than women. In that article, we noted that our hypothesis should be considered in conjunction with other ‘non-mutually exclusive’ relationship processes that also may contribute to the greater health benefit of marriage for men. The accompanying commentaries take issue with our article on the grounds that a) interpersonal relationships and health are multidimensional and complex; b) our subordination-reactivity hypothesis diverges from existing interpersonal theory and research; and c) it is “almost always” unwise to “pit” one explanation or theory against another. In this response we argue a) the indisputable point regarding the complexity of interpersonal relationships and health does not challenge the validity of our hypothesis; b) our hypothesis, as stated, is not logically inconsistent with the prior interpersonal theory and research cited, and c) there is considerable value to pitting explanations against each other when possible, and arguments to avoid doing so are at odds with fundamental scientific practices.

Journal

Sex RolesSpringer Journals

Published: Jun 30, 2011

References

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