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However, this essay will be focusing on work done byBlumer, who developed a huge proponent of Mead and suggested that the creation of reality is a continuous process. Symbolic interactionism focuses on the microscopic side of society, everyday life and how through symbolic interaction, individual communicate, interact and create order and meanings in their lives. The second part of the essay will focus on Goffman’s (Goffman, 8) work in relation to stigma.He emphasized thatbeingstigmatizedis only one of the two ‘faces’ of stigma, that is, how one has been label by society.
According to online Oxford dictionary, symbolic interactionism is defined as “the view of social behavior that emphasizes linguistic or gestural communication and its subjective understanding, especially the role of language in the formation of the child as a social being” (Oxford dictionary online, 400). Symbolic Interactionism is a study of human group and conduct which holds the importance of creation of meaning as vital to human conduct. Moreover, the views of symbolic interactionism are basic ideas of how individual could communicate with one other through use of symbols, such as gestures and language. This helps one shape their thoughts and actionsby learning the meaning of symbols. Symbolic interactions occur when the patterns of an individual are shaped by society. A persons’social life is determined by how much that person interacts with others in the society. According to symbolic interactionist, the self is social. This is because, one is born into an existing society, but bound by language shared or symbolic meaning and interactions. (Fitzpatrick, 11) suggests that ‘Human beings act according to things created from meanings, since such things have meaning for them. Meaning of those things is derived from social interactions with
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The approaches that are commonly used to explain human habits are the individualistic and the naturalistic theories (O’Donnell, 2000). The naturalistic notion implies that people’s behaviors are inherited while the individualistic notion suggests that humans are not the same.
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