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Research Interests for Marie-Joelle Estrada

Faculty Mentor: Leary

Research Interests:
I am a social psychologist with a primary interest in interpersonal relationships – specifically romantic relationship initiation and progression over time. My general interest within this area began by trying to understand how romantic relationships differ from other close relationships and why some relationships succeed while others fail. I address these general questions within two main lines of research. The first addresses the nature of romance, specifically how romantic actions differ from expressions of affection and love, the use of romance in relationship initiation and maintenance, and people’s different motivations for behaving romantically. The main focus of this line of work is to identify factor that make romantic relationships unique and fragile compared to other close relationships such as friendships. The second line of research examines biases in how partners perceive one another and how their biased perceptions affect the trajectory of the relationship. I examine these biases as in terms of separation of partner specific idealization from generalized romantic idealization, and also as stemming from personality variables such as narcissism and attachment style.


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