By David Harris
An creation to present debates round the topics of tradition, id and way of life. Such debates usually start with the statement that we are living in a "society of signs". good points contain: precis and important dialogue of a few easy techniques in social thought and cultural research; key readings of a few of the paintings of writers together with Barthes and Giddens; reports of labor in additional conventional parts, for instance, the sociology of id and the embedding approach present in social existence; and suggestion on extra examining.
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Extra resources for A Society of Signs?
As Collins argues, though, this sort of application was a fairly recent and specific one and, as a result perhaps, the distinctively American theoretical or philosophical context of what he calls ‘microinteractionism’ is not always clear. As usual, we shall find time for only a rather quick and basic summary, starting with a quick overall sketch. The enabling myth here is that social life grows out of interaction between individuals, in dyads or in larger but still primary groups. A process of mutual orientation takes place as individuals strive to interpret the meanings of the other’s actions or utterances.
A far richer and more extensive kind of interpersonal interaction is proposed by Habermas (see Habermas 1987), as we shall see: negotiation and mutual orientation are not limited to immediate demands of getting by in everyday life within norms, but are to extend much more broadly across the whole range of social action and the validity claims implied by them. After this brief summary, let us isolate some issues of particular importance for the arguments in the rest of this book: what problems and dilemmas arise when we consider interactionism as a theory of popular culture?
Many students will have become familiar with work which draws attention to the ways in which women or black people are (mis)represented in popular TV programmes (classically in soap operas or television advertisements, but also in sports coverage, news and current affairs, comedy programmes, and so on), and will have considered how these representations arise from the sexist and racist values of dominant groups. These values, and the underlying struggles to maintain a dominant place for them, can still be detected, it is claimed, behind all the specific artistic, commercial and technical values and processes at work at the more specific levels of the television and film industries.
A Society of Signs? by David Harris