Competence in Interpersonal Conflict:  by William R. Cupach, Daniel J. Canary, Brian H. Spitzberg
347 pages, $45.95 list
Instructor's Manual available
Competence in Interpersonal Conflict
Second Edition
Extensively updated with expanded and newly added chapters, the second edition of Competence in Interpersonal Conflict continues to present a conceptual framework for why communication competence is central to conflict management. Although no checklist of communication behaviors can guarantee success, the authors offer constructive guidelines that provide a basis for grappling with future conflicts in five unique settings: intercultural, organizational, familial, mediation, and violence in intimate relationships. Within any conflict interaction adept communicators embrace the notion that adopting an ethical stance is both desirable and practical.

Conflict between people is a natural feature of the human condition; when people interact and form relationships, conflicts inevitably emerge. How individuals manage conflict, and how they perceive both the opportunities and challenges it provides, will define their interpersonal relationships in more ways than any other kind of interaction behavior. Collaboration and adaptation are the hallmarks of a competent communicator, therefore how partners communicate during conflict can be more important than the frequency of their disagreements.
“A refreshing, in-depth examination of conflict and communication across contexts. A superb choice for intermediate and advanced students in a range of academic and professional fields.” — John V. Modaff, Morehead State University

“This book does a good job of synthesizing conflict research in an understandable manner for students.” — Alan Goodboy, Bloomsburg University
Table of Contents
1. The Importance of Conflict in Interpersonal Relationships
Why Study Conflict? / Defining Interpersonal Conflict / Features of Interpersonal Conflict

2. A Competence-Based Approach to Interpersonal Conflict
Criteria Guiding Perceptions of Competence / Factors That Facilitate Competence / An Explanatory Model of Interpersonal Conflict

3. Conflict Messages
The Topical Content of Conflict Interactions / Conflict Tactics, Strategies, and Styles / Patterns of Conflict Interaction / Reacting to Negative Conflict Patterns

4. Background Influences on Interpersonal Conflict
Distal Individual Factors Affecting Conflict Interaction / Distal Relational Factors Affecting Conflict Interaction

5. Proximal Influences: Spontaneous Reactions to Conflict
Anger and Anger-Like Responses / Initial Reactions to the Conflict Situation / Higher-Ordered Thoughts / The Dyad as a System That Affects Each Person's Behavior

6. Conflict Outcomes
Proximal Consequences / Distal Consequences

7. Intercultural Conflict Competence (Stella Ting-Toomey)
Intercultural Conflict Competence: Criteria and Components / Intercultural Conflict: Antecedent Factors / Intercultural Conflict Communication: Process Factors / Developing Intercultural Conflict Competence: Process and Outcome

8. Competence in Organizational Conflicts (Wendy H. Papa, Michael J. Papa, and Rick A. Buerkel)
Organizational Conflict Viewed from a Competence-Based Approach / Organizational Conflict and the Explanatory Model of Interpersonal Conflict / Phases of Conflict / Applying the Phase Model to Organizational Conflict

9. Family Conflict (Tamara D. Afifi, Desiree Aldeis, and Andrea Joseph)
Constructive versus Destructive Family Conflict / The Impact of Interparental Conflict on Children / Parent to Child Conflict / Misunderstanding as a Source of Family Conflict / The Role of Parenting Style in Family Conflicts / The Effect of Children's Conflict/Aggression on Other Family Members / Examining Family Conflict in Families as a Whole

10. Intimate Violence (Brian H. Spitzberg)
Myths and Maxims of Aggression and Violence in Intimate Relationships / An Interactional Model of Intimate Aggression / Refining the Interactional Model / Competent Violence?

11. Mediating Conflict (Claudia L. Hale and Amy Thieme)
What Is Mediation? / How Are Mediations Conducted? / What Skills and Knowledge Contribute to Mediator Competence? / What Skills and Knowledge Contribute to Disputant Competence?

12. Looking Forward to Future Conflicts
The Inevitability of Conflict / The Value of Competence in Managing Interpersonal Conflict / Guidelines for Managing Interpersonal Conflict