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Symbolic Interaction Theory Essay

973 words - 4 pages

The discussion in this paper outlines the significance of symbolic interaction theory as it can be helpful to analyze, critique, and understand interpersonal communication. The meanings assigned through symbols can be altered through an interpretive process which is directly related with the communication process. This interpretive process, therefore, highlights the importance of communication process for interaction with society.
Symbolic interaction theory explains the ways in which family as a unit interacts with each other engaging in verbal and nonverbal communication. This theory uses the basic modes and symbols to communicate and convey or receive messages. The symbols humans use to interact are gestures, rules, words, and roles. By developing a complex set of symbols, humans interact in specific environments. In other words, the interactions by using these symbols facilitate in communication. Effective communication supports individuals in their personal and professional life. In professional life, communication plays a vital role in organizational activities. Communication using symbols supports the personal life of an individual especially during interaction with family and society (Plunkett).
The unique contributions of symbolic interaction theory to family studies are; families are social groups and individuals develop a concept of self along with their identities by involving in social interaction. One main premise of theory is that humans generally act on the basis of meaning they derive from interaction through communication. Second main premise is the meaning assigned to communication arises from social interaction. These meanings are subsequently modified through an interpretive process directly related with communication process being third premise of the theory (Plunkett).
Symbolic interaction theory emphasizes using symbols to facilitate interaction through communication. The symbols for interaction are both verbal and nonverbal forms of communication. The purpose of communication is to convey messages across to others. This is a process that involves the sender and receiver of the message. By getting the message successfully, thoughts and ideas can be effectively conveyed. Such ideas and thoughts can be conveyed by speaking to other person, writing it or by explaining through symbols and signs. Verbal Communication occurs through speaking or exchange of words. It requires the usage of vocabulary, words, symbols, and numbers and is organized in sentences by using language. It is pertinent in mastering linguistic skills and is not reserved for the selected few but is a special skill that every one should develop to improve interactions and relationships. Everyone’s mind is continuously having thoughts and they are mostly with words listened to, spoken or written that have certain impact on people’s lives. They possess the power to create certain emotions and accordingly move people to take specific action. On...

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