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symbolic interactionism

societies create individuals who acquire minds and selves by symbolically interacting with others


ability to use symbols that have common social meanings


ability to reflect ourselves from the perspective of others

self fulfilling prophecy

individuals live up to the labels others impose on them


the part of the self that is an acting subject; impulsive, creative, spontaneous and generally unburdened by social rules and restrictions


socially conscious part of self; analytical, evaluative, aware of social conventions, rules, and expectations

particular others

individuals who are important to us

role taking

process of internalizing other's perspectives and viewing experiences from perspectives

generalized others

viewpoint of a social group, community, or society as a whole; rules, roles, and attitudes shared by members of a society


life is a drama and can be understood in dramatic terms; involves conflict and division that threatens some existing form or order


recognize that all things have substance; the general nature or essence of a thing


identification with each other


any tension, discomfort, sense of shame, or other unpleasant feeling that humans experience


create division among people and division causes guilt


our symbols allow us to conceive and name perfect forms or ideals top of hierarchy and guilt arises from the gap between the case and perfection

the negative

moral capacity to say no; ability to name the negative, which is the basis moral judgement and guilt comes from disobeying the rule


confessing feelings and asking for forgiveness


identifying an external source for some apparent failing or sin


placing sin on another to cleanse one of sin

narrative theory

humans by nature are storytelling beings and that narrative capacity is the most basic and most distinct for humans

narrative rationality

judgement of the quality of narratives according to coherence and fidelity


pieces of story fitting together

internal coherence

if the storyteller told us all of the important details so the outcome is believable


extent to which story resonates with listeners

dramaturgical model

likens ordinary social interaction to theatrical performance


models we rely on to make sense of experience

impression management

process of managing setting, words, nonverbal communication, and dress in an effort to create a particular image of individuals and situations

performance ethnography

attempts to understand how symbolic behaviors actually perform cultural values and personal identities


method of interpreting actions in a manner that generates understanding in terms of those performing actions

thick description

ethnographer develops the ability to represent cultural practices from the point of view of people who are native to the culture

thin description

give a shallow description of activities

near experience

those have significance to members of a particular culture or social community

distance experience

those that have meaning to people outside of that particular culture

personal narrative

telling a story about experience, identity, and so forth


extent to which performance realizes identities and experiences

technological determinism

technology (specifically media) decisively shapes how individuals think, feel, and act, and how societies organize themselves and operate

tribal epoch

oral tradition/ face to face interaction

literate epoch

common symbols allowed people to communicate without face to face

print epoch

printing press helped mass produce written materials and were not only for the elite anymore

electronic epoch

revived oral tradition and preeminence of hearing and touch

hot media

person doesn't need a lot of information to understand the message

cool media

demand involvement from individuals

cultivation theory

television cultivates or promotes a view of social reality that is inaccurate but that viewers nonetheless assume reflects real life


cumulative process by which television fosters beliefs about social reality


television ability to stabilize and homogenize views within a society


the extent to which something is congruent with personal experience


socially created system of values, identities, and activities for men and women


values, institutions, and practices that reflect the experience, values, and interests of men as a group and protect their privileges while dismissing experiences, values, and interests of women as a group

patriarchal universe of discourse

set of language conventions that reflect a particular definition of reality/ at any moment in the life of a culture shapes the understandings of all who participate in that universe of discourse.

inclusion stage

scholars attempt to increase awareness of women's contributions, experiences, values, and mode and to raise awareness about inequality between men and women

revisionist stage

feminists scholars might attempt to broaden views of significant communication

masculine bias

set of biases that favor masculine perspectives and experiences

muted language/muted experience

when words and their meanings do not reflect the experiences of some groups, members of the groups are constrained in their ability to express themselves

ideological domination

competing ideologies (ways of understanding reality_

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