Dr. Heidi Reeder is an associate professor in the Department of Communication, and the 2007 Carnegie Foundation’s Idaho Professor of the Year.
According to the storyline of many films and TV shows, men and women can never be friends because they will always end up romantically involved. Dr. Reeder set out to research whether this is true, based on the experience of actual friends. In this podcast, Dr. Reeder discusses the four types of attraction that can occur in various friendships- friendship attraction, romantic attraction, subjective physical/sexual attraction and objective physical/sexual attraction- as well as how those forms of attraction can change over time. She makes the case that for many male-female friends the primary form of attraction is a friendship bond, but that other types of attraction can offer some interesting variation in some friendships.