Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Good ol' Goffman

According to Mr. Goffman, the self is the central organizing feature of all social encounters and we have both our core self and our various situational selves. The way that I see it, the situational selves are like the different "hats" that we wear in life. We may be parents, and students, and spouses, and employees, and commuters, all at different times. (Sometimes even at the same time!) Switching roles doesn't make us any less genuine, it simply means that we may behave or speak differently in front of one particular audience as opposed to another. For example: You wouldn't speak to your grandmother the same way that you would speak to your professor, and you wouldn't speak to your spouse the same way in which you would speak to your employer. Your core values and beliefs are all the same in every situation but the self that you are using in one situation may be completely different from another.

Can you think of a time when you were confronted with two different audiences at once and you were forced to choose one self over the other?
How did you handle that situation?

1 comment:

  1. I was at the gym one day just doing my thing and then I saw a customer from work. I didn't want to have to go from the gym me to the work me. I really had no choice though cause I would have been rude if I didn't at least say hi to the person.