Document Type


Date of Degree

Summer 2014

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In

Communication Studies

First Advisor

Muñoz, Kristine

First Committee Member

Hingstman, David

Second Committee Member

Duck, Steve

Third Committee Member

Hitlin, Steven

Fourth Committee Member

Colvin, Carolyn


The purpose of this research is to investigate actual communication and real world interactions among friends, in order to add to our understanding of political persuasion. Opinions and attitudes are affected by more than deliberate persuasive attempts, and politics are more than just elections and candidate speeches. What people say or do on an everyday basis with friends can be just as - if not more - influential, particularly as a meaning-making endeavor to establish, test, or solidify attitudes. An alternative approach to political communication should address the ongoing interactive nature of meaningmaking and the role of relationships in political persuasion. Thus this study uses discourse analysis through the lens of Sequential Inferential Paradigm to examine a conversation among friends about a political topic, finding that the structure of the conversation and the relationship between the participants are important considerations of influence.


communication, discourse analysis, friends, persuasion, politics, sequence


vii, 143 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 137-143).


Copyright 2014 Amber L. Jannusch

Included in

Communication Commons