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October 2021

Identity and the definition of the situation in a mass-mediated context

Journal/Book: Symb Interact. 2000; 23: Journals Dept 2120 Berkeley Way, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA. Univ Calif Press. 1-27.

Abstract: The importance of identity and the definition of the situation for symbolic interactionist theory and research are discussed. These two concepts have been separated in much research since the 1970s, with identity being used in a variety of ways. This separation is partly attributed to paradigm shifts in social science, as well as to popular culture treatments of identity. Popular culture's emphasis on ''collective'' and ''personal'' identities is processed through entertainment formats that emphasize emotional and vicarious involvement drama and action. Materials illustrate the presence of a mass-mediated generalized other, media communities, and the significance this has for realist and postrealist ethnography. Suggestions are offered for a reintegration of identity and the definition of the situation in ethnographic work.

Note: Article Altheide DL, Arizona State Univ, Sch Justice Studies, Tempe,AZ 85287 USA


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