Krystyna Aune

Krystyna Aune



George 334

(808) 956-0940



I was born in Chicago, the daughter of Polish immigrants to the U.S. Given their histories in Europe (WWII!), the enduring value of education was always stressed to me. I took heed and stayed on the educational path from preschool to PhD. In the doctoral program in Communication at the University of Arizona, I met R. Kelly Aune, my husband and now emeritus professor of Communicology. He came to UH Mānoa in 1988 as an assistant professor, and I joined the faculty three years later. I have spent the past 31+ years serving in a variety of roles in the department and the university, most recently serving as the Dean of Graduate Division. I’m delighted to return, full circle to my academic home after over 15 years in administration at UH Mānoa.


  • PhD, Communication, University of Arizona, 1992
  • MS, Communication, Illinois State University, 1987
  • BS, Psychology, Illinois State University, 1985


Emotions; relationship management; adult play.


My primary line of research is designed to increase our understanding of emotions in relationships. I have studied how people in close relationships express and manage their emotions utilizing different methodologies from surveys, diaries, and laboratory studies and experiments. I have also examined adult play in relationships and a phenomenon we coined “persona sharing” (the adoption of behavioral and psychological attributes of characters from personal or media sources).  These studies explored everyday occurrences of relating that may be conceptually invisible to us, and yet profoundly impactful.