Abstract and Keywords
While it seems intuitive enough that having friends and friendship experiences should play an essential role in happiness, previous research investigating the association of social relationships with happiness has primarily focused on romantic relationships. Only recently have researchers sought to move beyond theory and rather shed empirical light on the specific associations of friendship and friendship experiences with happiness. This chapter reviews the theoretical arguments and empirical research suggesting that friendship is indeed associated with happiness across age, ethnic, and cultural groups. The chapter then evaluates the relative importance of different indices of friendship in happiness. Finally, the chapter concludes with a discussion of the theoretical and methodological issues that need to be taken into account in future friendship and happiness research.
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