Symbols, Selves, and Social Reality A Symbolic Interactionist Approach to Social Psychology and Sociology

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  • Edition: 3rd
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-03-25
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
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The classroom is a dynamic, interactive environment in which students are continually evaluating, questioning, debating, and in turn, shaping social reality. Symbols, Selves, and Social Reality: A Symbolic Interactionist Approach to Social Psychology and Sociology, Third Edition, provides students with a succinct, engaging, and affordable introduction to symbolic interactionism, the perspective that social reality is created, negotiated, and changed through the process of social interaction. Focusing on how elements of race and gender affect identity, authors Kent L. Sandstrom, Daniel D. Martin, and Gary Alan Fine use interesting, relevant real-world examples to discuss the personal significance of symbolic interactionism, its expanding theoretical scope, and its relationship to other prominent perspectives in sociology and social psychology. They skillfully cover empirical research topics that are inherently interesting to students, such as the dynamics of self-development, impression management, identity transformation, gender play, rumor transmission, and collective action. Thoroughly revised and updated in the third edition, this best-selling book now offers additional group assignments and activities at the end of each chapter in order to encourage student participation. Featuring updated case studies throughout, this edition also moves the section on theoretical perspectives to the beginning of the text, thereby providing students with a more thorough conceptual framework from the outset. Rich in pedagogical tools--including end-of-chapter summaries, key points and concepts, glossaries, readings lists, and discussion questions--Symbols, Selves, and Social Reality: A Symbolic Interactionist Approach to Social Psychology and Sociology, Third Edition, effectively demonstrates the tremendous power people have in determining social reality. Ideal for courses in symbolic interaction, individual and society, and social psychology, this unique text helps students understand how symbolic interactionism works, both in theory and in practice.

Author Biography

Kent L. Sandstrom is Professor of Sociology and Head of the Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Criminology at the University of Northern Iowa.
Daniel D. Martin is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Minnesota, Duluth.
Gary Alan Fine is Professor of Sociology at Northwestern University.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. vii
Acknowledgmentsp. ix
About the Authorsp. xi
The Meaning of Symbolic Interactionismp. 1
The Origins and Development of Symbolic Interactionismp. 2
Pragmatism and Sociology: The Contributions of George Herbert Meadp. 4
The Emergence of Symbolic Interactionismp. 7
Guiding Assumptions of the Symbolic Interactionist Perspectivep. 7
How Is Interactionism Relevant and Beneficial to You?p. 13
Understanding Yourself and Your Choicesp. 13
Understanding Joint Actionp. 14
Summaryp. 15
Glossary of Key Termsp. 16
Questions for Reflection or Assignmentp. 17
Suggested Readings for Further Studyp. 17
The Interactionist Toolkit: Methods, Strategies, and Relevant Perspectivesp. 20
Methodological Traditions and Practicesp. 20
Changing Directions in Interactionist Ethnographyp. 22
Alternatives to Ethnography: The Iowa School and Conventional Scientific Methodsp. 28
Related Social Psychological Perspectivesp. 30
Dramaturgical Theoryp. 30
Exchange Theoryp. 32
Social Cognition Theory and Cognitive Sociologyp. 33
Ethnomethodologyp. 35
Emerging Voices and Perspectives Within Interactionismp. 37
Feminismp. 37
Conflict Theoryp. 38
Postmodernismp. 40
Summaryp. 41
Glossary of Key Termsp. 41
Questions for Reflection or Assignmentp. 44
Suggested Readings for Further Studyp. 44
People As Symbol Makers and Users: Language and the Creation of Realityp. 48
Creating and Transforming Realityp. 48
Sensationp. 49
Conceptualization and Categorizationp. 51
Symbols, Signs, and Meaningsp. 52
The Importance of Symbolsp. 53
Naming "Reality" and Creating Meaningful Objectsp. 54
Language, Naming, and the Construction of Realityp. 55
The Necessity of Languagep. 58
Language, Naming, and Our Constructions of Othersp. 59
Language, Naming, and the Construction of 'Inner' Reality: Emotional Experiencep. 68
Summaryp. 71
Glossary of Key Termsp. 72
Questions for Reflection or Assignmentp. 73
Suggested Readings for Further Studyp. 73
Socialization: The Creation of Meaning and Identityp. 77
Self-Development and the Stages of Socializationp. 79
The Preparatory Stagep. 82
The Play Stagep. 83
The Game Stagep. 83
Refinements of Mead's Theory of Socialization and Self-Developmentp. 85
Socialization and the Creation of Gender Identityp. 88
Creating Gender Identity in Early Childhoodp. 88
Re-creating Gender Identity: Preadolescent Culture and Playp. 89
Boys and Girls Together: Learning and Maintaining Gender Boundariesp. 94
Socialization as an Ongoing Process: Turning Points in Identityp. 98
Passage to Adulthoodp. 99
Turning Points and Epiphanies: The Case of HIV/AIDSp. 101
Summaryp. 103
Glossary of Key Termsp. 105
Questions for Reflection or Assignmentp. 106
Suggested Readings for Further Studyp. 107
The Nature and Significance of the Selfp. 111
What Is the Self?p. 113
The Self as Social Processp. 115
The Self as Social Structurep. 117
The Self-Concept: Its Structure and Contentsp. 118
Self-Esteem and Its Sources: Beyond the Looking-Glass Selfp. 122
The Impact of the Self-Conceptp. 124
The Self as Dramatic Effectp. 125
Staging the Self in Everyday Lifep. 125
Regions of Self-Presentationp. 128
The Self as Situated Identityp. 129
Beyond Goffman: The Drama of Self Versus the Experience of Selfp. 133
The Experience of Self in Postmodern Societyp. 134
Summaryp. 137
Glossary of Key Termsp. 138
Questions for Reflection or Assignmentp. 140
Suggested Readings for Further Studyp. 141
Role Taking, Role Making, and the Coordination of Actionp. 145
Defining Situations and Their Realityp. 145
Roles, Role Taking, and Role Makingp. 148
Role Takingp. 149
Role Makingp. 150
The Coordination of Social Behavior: Aligning Actionsp. 152
Aligning Actions and Motive Talkp. 153
Emotions and the Coordination of Behaviorp. 154
Emotions and Role Attachments: Role Embracement Versus Role Distancep. 155
Power, Constraint, and the Coordination of Behaviorp. 156
Relationships, Power, and Constraintp. 158
The Characteristics of Asymmetrical Relationshipsp. 158
Social Life as a Negotiated Orderp. 162
Summaryp. 164
Glossary of Key Termsp. 165
Questions for Reflection or Assignmentp. 167
Suggested Readings for Further Studyp. 167
The Politics of Social Reality: Constructing and Negotiating Deviancep. 170
What Is Deviance?p. 171
The Absolutist Viewp. 172
The Relativist Viewp. 172
Labeling Theory and the Social Construction of Deviancep. 173
The Banning Process: Moral Entrepreneurs and the Making of Deviancep. 174
The Detection Process: Seeing Deviance and Deviantsp. 176
The Attribution Process: Imputing Motives and Negotiating Identitiesp. 180
The Reaction Process: Sanctioning and Its Effectsp. 185
Challenging and Transforming Deviant Labels: Tertiary Deviancep. 186
Limitations and Extensions of Labeling Theoryp. 189
The Construction of Social Problemsp. 191
The Media and the Construction of Terrorismp. 192
Summaryp. 194
Glossary of Key Termsp. 195
Questions for Reflection or Assignmentp. 197
Suggested Readings for Further Studyp. 199
Collective Behavior and Social Movementsp. 203
Collective Behaviorp. 203
Riotsp. 205
Rumorsp. 208
Panicsp. 211
Social Movementsp. 214
How Do Social Movements Emerge, and Why Do People Join Them?p. 214
Strategies and Bases of Movement Recruitmentp. 215
Ideology, Identity, and Commitmentp. 217
Emerging Directions in Interactionist Analysis of Social Movementsp. 219
Frame Analysis and Alignmentp. 219
The Culture of Social Movementsp. 222
Conclusionsp. 226
Summaryp. 227
Glossary of Key Termsp. 228
Questions for Reflection or Assignmentp. 230
Suggested Readings for Further Studyp. 230
Author Indexp. 235
Subject Indexp. 237
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