Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Master of Arts (MA)

Degree Name

Communication Studies

Other Degree Name/Area of Focus

Interpersonal Communication

Department or School/College

Communication Studies

Committee Chair

Dr. Stephen Yoshimura

Commitee Members

Dr. Christina Yoshimura Dr. Lucian Gideon Conway, III


Capitalization, Positivity, Dark Side, Expectancy Violation Theory


University of Montana

Subject Categories

Interpersonal and Small Group Communication | Social Influence and Political Communication | Social Psychology


Capitalization was first articulated by Langston (1994) to describe how individuals increase their own positivity by sharing good news with others. This study tests the idea that sometimes people share positive news with others they do not like in an attempt to savor their dissatisfaction with shared accomplishments. A fully crossed randomized 2 X 2 experiment was used to set an initial impression (positive or negative) followed by an interview procedure where the participants would disclose some recent positive event and the confederate interviewer would provide feedback (positive or negative). This procedure was used to test capitalization processes in a lab setting. Limited support for negative capitalization was found. Expectancy Violations Theory is used to describe the relationship between the initial and feedback interactions for standard and negative capitalization processes.



© Copyright 2019 Christopher Edward Anderson