Episode 261

On Parasocial Relationships


January 15th, 2024

29 mins 24 secs

Season 2

Your Hosts

About this Episode

This week Katelyn Doyle, Communications and Marketing Manager at Distress and Crisis Ontario, and Caitlin Plant, Program Manager at DCO, talk about parasocial relationships. Parasocial, as defined by Oxford Dictionary, is "Designating a relationship characterized by the one-sided, unreciprocated sense of intimacy felt by a viewer, fan, or follower for a well-known or prominent figure (typically a media celebrity), in which the follower or fan comes to feel (falsely) that they know the celebrity as a friend." If you'd like to learn more about anything discussed in the podcast, these articles are linked below:

Forster, Riva Tukachinsky. The Oxford Handbook of Parasocial Experiences. Oxford University Press, 2023.
Laing, Sarah. “Why Celebrity Deaths like Matthew Perry’s Can Hit Us so Hard.” The Kit, 2 Nov. 2023, thekit.ca/culture/culture-celebrity/matthew-perry-death-parasocial-grief/.
Macdonald, Mary Ellen. “Parasocial Grief and Why I Can Grieve Matthew Perry.” Grief Matters, Grief Matters, 12 Jan. 2024, griefmatters.ca/blog/parasocial-grief-and-why-i-can-grieve-matthew-perry.
“Oxford Word of the Year 2023.” Oxford Languages, 2023, languages.oup.com/word-of-the-year/2023/.
“Parasocial Relationships: What to Know.” Medical News Today, MediLexicon International, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/parasocial-relationships. Accessed 12 Jan. 2024.
Punjabi, Rajul. “We Asked a Therapist Why We Grieve Celebrities like We Knew Them.” VICE, 8 June 2018, www.vice.com/en/article/ywexgx/we-asked-a-therapist-why-we-grieve-celebrities-like-we-knew-them.

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