Standard Article


  1. Wyndol Furman,
  2. Laren B. Shomaker

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0371

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Furman, W. and Shomaker, L. B. 2010. Friendships. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–2.

Author Information

  1. University of Denver

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


Friendships are important relationships in all cultures and throughout the lifespan. Friendships are characterized by several defining features: (1) they are dyadic relationships, (2) there is a reciprocated, affective bond, (3) they are voluntary relationships, (4) they are typically egalitarian in nature, and (5) almost all friendships entail shared activities and companionship. Friendships often meet other functions as well, such as serving as a source of support and providing opportunities for self-disclosure and intimacy.


  • peers;
  • friendship;
  • companionship;
  • social development