Focussed Interaction in Behavior in Public Place(1963) Introduction Erving Goffman (June 11, 1992 – Nov 19,1982) was the important sociologist and intellectual in the twentieth century. Born in Canada, Goffman developed his intellectual interest in the humanities and social sciences…
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Focussed Interaction Goffman's greatest contribution to social theory is symbolic interaction. The main emphasis of his work was society acting on different settings and contexts. The main focus of his work was the everyday behavior and interaction of people. If life is theater, people have to perform in different settings. Fact to face interaction happens in gathering on any occasion where two or more people present. Goffman preferred that face to face interaction should be regarded as a separate branch of sociology and called this study as the interaction order. The study was designed to understand every occasion of face to face interaction which covers a wide gamut of places like restaurants gatherings on special occasion and public places and private parties etc. For all practical purposes, face to face interaction requires gathering or any occasion where people are co- present with one another. And whenever people are co-present they act as a source of information for one another. For all the co-presence there are distinctive types of communication patterns. These communication patterns or informations are focussed when all the attention converges on one point or become unfocussed when it is not. Focussed interaction happens when people mutually engage in communication required for the activity. Participants in focused interactions usually engage in 'interchange' which requires some 'system requirements' and ‘ritual requirements'. Territories of the Self In 'Relations in Public' Micro studies of the Public Order. (Goffman E 1971 Basic Books New York). Goffman explains how people use their 'territories' while behaving in public spaces and places. The term territory denotes the places and spaces or objects possessed or occupied by a group of persons or individuals. According to Goffman these territories are delineated by markers referred as central markers, boundary markers and ear markers. Violations of the territories are also discussed. These violations are in the form of behavior which individual persons try to avoid. The violations are close body proximately, touching other persons, rude looks and inappropriate form of addressing etc. In (Ch2 the territories of the self) Goffman explains the relationships in public settings and how people behave in these places and manage their interaction (Goffman E 1971 Relation in Public : Micro studies of the Public Order : Basic Books New York. Ch2 the territories of the self). Supportive Interchanges Goffman's analysis of the focused interaction presents a set of 'inter changes' the participants engage. These interchanges are called supportive interchanges and 'remedial interchanges'. As per Goffman rituals form part of supportive interchanges which turns into social relationship. Goffman's approach to the social interaction explains what happens when two are more persons are co-present consider aspects such as ritual. Greeting is a form of social ritual and Goffman says “Greetings and farewells provide ritual bracket around a spate of joint activity”. (Goffman E 1971. Relations in Public : Micro studies of the Public Order. Basic Books New York. Page 79). Greetings are socially constructed across the different cultures. Though Greeting rituals vary from culture to culture they are accepted as social norm among all cultures invariably. Other forms of social rituals which Goffman explains in 'Supportive interchanges' are the 'little pieties', periods of high access' and the
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“'Focused Interaction' In Behavior in Public Places (1963) Literature Review”, n.d. https://studentshare.org/sociology/1437133-yiefocused-interactionyie-in-behavior-in-public.
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