Understanding Personal Relationships introduces readers to the new interdisciplinary field of personal relationships. It does so by integrating central themes from the fields of social psychology, sociology, clinical psychology and family studies. In a comprehensive, bibliographic essay, the editors give an overview of the growth of the field and predict future areas of research and clinical practice. Early chapters deal with some of the theoretical issues in the study of personal relationships, while other contributors discuss the motivational issues in relationships. Five chapters examine specific types of relationships: those which are established (like marriage); those which are in a state of transition; those which are under stress; and those which have broken.Through its breadth of coverage and the presentation of writers from several different disciplines, this volume conveys the spirit of pioneering and practical optimism that characterizes the new interdisciplinary approach to understanding personal relationships.