Social Negativity and Health: Conceptual and Measurement Issues



The goal of this review paper is to identify conceptual and measurement issues in the study of social negativity and health in order to foster development of research on this important topic. We begin by discussing how the negative side of social ties has been conceptualized and by identifying features of the underlying construct. Next, we review selected evidence on the effects of social negativity on physiology, self-reported health, morbidity, and mortality. We end by highlighting unresolved questions and presenting recommendations for how the field should move forward.