Negative Social Ties: Prevalence and Consequences

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Recent decades have seen a surge of interest in negative ties and the negative aspects of social relationships. Researchers in different fields have studied negative ties and their consequences for various individual outcomes, including health and well-being, social status in schools and other organizations, and job performance and satisfaction, but they have mainly done so in disconnect. The result is a dearth of theoretization, manifested in a multitude of concepts and measures, that has made synthesis difficult and left numerous questions unanswered. By critically assessing these literatures, this review maps unresolved issues and identifies important lacunae in current investigations of negative ties. It is organized around three key issues: What are negative ties? How prevalent are they and where do they come from? And what are their consequences? The review concludes by proposing an agenda for future research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-196
Number of pages20
JournalAnnual Review of Sociology
StatePublished - 2021

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  • negative interactions
  • negative ties
  • social networks
  • social relationships
  • social support


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