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A survey of scientific communication theory / Charles Pavitt.
Pavitt, Charles, author.
New York, NY : Peter Lang Publishing, Inc., [2016]
xii, 369 pages ; 23 cm
Includes bibliographical references and index.
1433133768 paperback ; alkaline paper

1433133776 hardcover ; alkaline paper

9781433133763 paperback ; alkaline paper

9781433133770 hardcover ; alkaline paper

9781453918425 electronic book


Material Type
Call Number
Book P90.P338s

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This detailed survey of present-day scientific communication theory rejects the outmoded «levels» organizational scheme in favor of a system based on the underlying model and fundamental explanatory principle each theory presupposes. In doing so it shows the fundamental similarities among all communication-relevant contexts. Most theories included in the book are causal in nature, derived from one of three underlying models: message production, message reception, or interactive. A few theories take on a functional form, sometimes in dialectic or systemic versions. An introductory chapter describes what is meant by scientific explanation, how that concept is instantiated in scientific communication theory, and delineates the three causal models prevalent in these theories. A useful resource for scholars, this book is suitable for graduate and advanced undergraduate courses in communication theory.

Author Notes

Charles Pavitt (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison,) is Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Delaware. He is the author of The Philosophy of Science and Communication Theory and Small Group Discussion: A Theoretical Approach.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. v
Chapter 1 The Foundations of Scientific Communication Theoryp. 1
Chapter 2 Hedonistic-Driven Message Reception Theoriesp. 33
Chapter 3 Hedonistic-Driven Interactional Theoriesp. 69
Chapter 4 Understanding-Driven Message Reception Theoriesp. 109
Chapter 5 Understanding-Driven Interactional Theoriesp. 159
Chapter 6 Cognitive Consistency-Driven Message Reception Theoriesp. 181
Chapter 7 Other Need-Based Theoriesp. 213
Chapter 8 Goal-Driven Message Production Theoriesp. 243
Chapter 9 Other Goal-Directed Theoriesp. 279
Chapter 10 Functional Theoriesp. 313
Final Thoughtsp. 347
Referencesp. 351
Indexp. 365