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Social Exchange Theory Essay

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Social Exchange Theory Essay
Pam: What is Social Exchange Theory?
Social Exchange Theory is an important social psychology concept that concerns social changes as a process of interactive exchanges between different people. This theory is often used within the business world to explain and analyze commercial transactions.
< h3>What is the History of the Theory?
Social Exchange Theory has strong roots in the fields of economics, sociology and psychology. From a historical perspective, early psychologists focused on the principles of reinforcement, functionalism, and utilitarianism. In fact, the famous French anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss incorporated the important ethnographic principles of gift exchange and kinship systems into the theory of social exchange. Interestingly
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The fundamental concept of the theory of social exchange is cost and rewards. This means that cost and reward comparisons drive human decisions and behavior. Costs are the negative consequences of a decision, such as time, money and energy. Rewards are the positive results of social exchanges. Therefore, the generally accepted idea is that people will subtract the costs from the rewards in order to calculate value. For example, a person asks an acquaintance to help them move, but they only slightly know each other. The acquaintenance will assess their relationship history, the state of their relationship and the potential benefits. If the acquaintenance doesn’t feel close to the person and doesn’t plan on pursuing a social relationship, they may decline. However, if the person promises certain favors, such as helping out the acquaintance with a difficult problem, they may …show more content…
The theory of social exchange proposes that individuals will make decisions based on certain outcomes. For example, they will expect the most profit, rewards, positive outcomes and long-term benefits. They will also prefer the exchange that results in the most security, social approval and independence. In contrast, they will also choose alternatives that result in the fewest costs, consequences and least social disapproval. Therefore, every social exchange decision can be a complex decision that requires the person to evaluate different costs and

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