Can TV characters fulfil our need to belong? exploring attachment styles and parasocial relationships among Pakistani young adults
BS (Social Sciences & Liberal Arts)
Faculty / School
School of Economics and Social Sciences (SESS)
Department of Social Sciences & Liberal Arts
Date of Award
Date of Submission
Zainab Tariq, Lecturer, Department of Social Sciences
SSLA Culminating Experience
Attachment, Parasocial Relationships, TV, Belongingness, Social Surrogacy
This exploratory study investigates the relationship between adult attachment styles (secure, preoccupied, dismissive avoidant, and fearful avoidant) and parasocial relationships (PSR), specifically those formed with fictional TV characters. Its key aim was to determine whether a correlation exists between the two variables. The present research used self-reports in the form of a questionnaire to gather data from a sample of 122 Pakistani citizens characterised as emerging adults (i.e., aged 18-25). Participants completed the following measures: the Revised Adult Attachment Scale (RAAS) – Close Relationships Version, the Parasocial Interaction Scale, and TV-Viewing Motivations Scale (data from this scale was not used in the final analysis, owing to the small sample size). Data extracted from these measures were compiled and analysed on SPSS; a point-biserial correlation was carried out between the four attachment categories and mean PSR scores to uncover any significant associations. Results demonstrated a significant correlation between PSR and fearful avoidant attachment, a negative correlation between PSR and secure attachment, as well as between PSR and dismissive avoidant attachment. No significant relationship between PSR and preoccupied attachment was found. These results largely align with those found in previous research (excluding that regarding preoccupied attachment). These are discussed later in the study within the context of the social surrogacy hypothesis. Limitations, directions for future research, and practical implications of this research are considered. Possible interventions are also briefly discussed.
Arif, S. (2022). Can TV characters fulfil our need to belong? exploring attachment styles and parasocial relationships among Pakistani young adults (Unpublished undergraduate project). Institute of Business Administration, Pakistan. Retrieved from https://ir.iba.edu.pk/sslace/116
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