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Chapter 1Communication is Symbolic-A Symbol is Arbitrary and represents something else-Object-Idea-Person or Place-Relationship-A symbol can be a word, movement, sound, picture, logo, and moreEx:-Money-Love-Victory-Freedom-Symbols and signs are not the same-Signs are consequences/indicators of something specific-Not able to be changed by human arbitrary action-Symbols have no direct connection to what they represent-Can be different in different culturesex: symbol of godSYMBOLS ARE ARBITRARY, SIGNS ARE SPECIFICVerbal Symbols-dog-chien-perro-Symbols must convey meaning-Particular meanings are not tied to a single symbol-Can be conveyed in multiple waysEX: Symbols of PeaceDifferent things (peace sign circle, peace with fingers, dove) all symbols of peaceCommunication Requires Meaning-Social construction of Meaning-Symbols take on meaning in social context or society as they are used over time-Meanings are recognized by those who have used them over time-Society creates its own meaning to whichever symbol based on that society
Non-Verbal Symbols-Statue of liberty-A countries flagVERBAL AND NON VERBAL SYMBOLS HAVE DENOTATIVE AND CONNOTATIVE MEANINGS-DENOTATIVE MEANINGis the commonly understood, widely accepted PRIMARY MEANINGof a verbal or non verbal symbol-CONNOTATIVE MEANINGis provided by the SECONDARY ASSOCIATIONSof verbal or non verbal symbolCommunication Involves Frames-Frames are basic forms of knowledge that provide definition to a scenario-Both people agree, or-Cultural assumptions are built in-Communication frames draw boundaries around conversations and pull attention to and away from certain things-Coordinating Interactions -Frames help people understand their role in the conversation as well as what is expected of them-Shared understanding of these frames enable people to make sense of what is occurring so they can coordinate their symbolic activities-Perspectives-Frames are partly bases on a person’s perspectives of situations and relationships-Influence the coordinating of interactions and assigning meaning-Frames also explain why people do not always agree on what is occurring-Assigning Meaning-People use frames to make decisions about what symbols to use and how the symbols should be interpreted-Symbols need a background of knowledge build into the interpretation of the words and/or images themselves-Shared Knowledge of background reduces need for explanation of termsCommunication and Meaning Are Relational-Communication and relationships are intertwined-Relationships are assumed any time we communicate with someone-Communication contains content (message) and relational levels-Relationships are not always obvious
EXAMPLE OF 2 DIFFERENT RELATIONSHIPSA: I have a bad cold, I haven’t slept, and I’m afraid I’m going to flunk our test tomorrow because I’m not well enough to study.