Perspectives

Ohio University Professor Dr. Bill Rawlins featured in The Atlantic, NPR’s “On Point”


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By Maygan Beeler

Ohio University’s Dr. Bill Rawlins, Stocker professor of interpersonal communication in the School of Communication Studies, was featured in The Atlantic last month for his research on communication between friends across the course of their life.

The article, titled “How Friendships Change in Adulthood,” examined the way friendships evolve in adulthood, while noting what people want from these relationships remains consistent as they age.

The popularity of this story led to an invitation for Rawlins to appear on the National Public Radio show “On Point,” with Tom Ashbrook on Monday, Nov. 2 from 11 a.m. to Noon. The radio segment focused on the evolution of friendships over a lifetime and how these relationships are dissolved or maintained.

“Friendship is so contingent that it’s a matter of both exercising your will to try to manage your time and make time for friends, and the social circumstances you’re in,” Rawlins said during the “On Point” interview. “When you characterize friendship you have to realize that it’s a voluntary relationship.”

The full NPR “On Point” radio segment with Bill Rawlins can be found here.

The Atlantic “How Friendships Change in Adulthood” article that quotes Rawlins and features his research can be found here.