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lec3 - April 7 2011 Symbolic Interactionism By George...

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April 7, 2011 Symbolic Interactionism By George Mead (and Herbert Blummer) Mead’s Claim The most human and humanizing activity that people can engage in is talking to each other SI Central Idea: Human realities are socially constructed through communication (what we believe to be real comes from what we talk about with others; our realities are completely constructed through comm. with other people) Thomas Dictum: if individuals define situations as real, they are real in their consequences Theme 1: The importance of meanings for human behavior - Individuals construct meaning through the communication process - The goal of interaction is to create shared meaning (transactional model) Theme 1 supports three assumptions 1. Humans act toward others on the basis of the meanings those others have for them (the meanings we assign to symbols are a product of social interaction and represent our agreement to apply certain meanings to specific symbols) 2. Meaning is created in interaction between people o
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