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Symbolic interactionism - Essay Example

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The perspective is influential in many areas of sociology. The philosopher argued that people act towards things based on the meaning that those…
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Symbolic Interactionsim Symbolic interactionism was coined by Blumer Herbert, an interpreter and a philosopher, and was later progressed by his students. The perspective is influential in many areas of sociology. The philosopher argued that people act towards things based on the meaning that those things have for them. The meanings are derivatives of social interaction and may be modified through interpretation. A situation or event only has real consequences when people define it as real. The definition and attribution of reality are based on the expression of language that leads to the sense of self, thought, and the socializing aspect of the society within the individual. Based on the relationship between the individual and the society, symbolic interactionism brings the issue of coordinated management of meaning.
Individuals in a communication process tend to construct social realities of the world they create to shape them. The definition and management of meaning to reflect reality is a two-way process that is enhanced by effective communication. The things that individuals say matter because they are a reflection of their thoughts and implications of reality. Symbolic interactionism succeeds in the social perspective when people cease to violate the interpersonal expectations of other people and work towards conformity.
Even when the definition of social interactionism was being made, the modern ways and theories of communication were still in place. Only those philosophers had not identified them, or none had talked about them openly. For instance, the theory of social penetration applies all the time in the communication process, whether or not the communicators are aware of the existence of the theory. At the same time, in order to socialize and interact in a healthy manner, symbolic interactionism only reflects the reality it claims to symbolize when there is a reduction of uncertainty in the socialization process and pathway. It is through the reduction of uncertainty that people can socialize and share experiences that are foundations for the formation of friendship.
In any social perspective, there must be contradictions and understandings between people based on their symbolic understanding of reality, as coined by the philosopher and his students. Although people believe that they have the right to control and make their information confidential, social interactions require sharing of information and ideas as one of the primary ways of the development of friendship.
The continuous aspect of communication and interaction in communication can be well understood from the life of the philosopher who coined the symbolic interactionism theory. It is after his death that his students collected all the communication that they had and class notes that led to the popularization of the theory (Griffin 5). The philosopher initiated the inner structure of the theory while the students progressed it to higher levels and made it a popular theory in the understanding of the modern communication strategies. As we continue in the twenty-first century, symbolic interactionism continues to take shape and depicts the way of communication between individuals. The term was coined in the earlier days by earlier philosophers but continues to be of significance.
Works Cited
Griffin, Em. A first look at communication theory 9th edition. Boston: McGraw-Hill, 2003. Read More
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