Monday, January 25, 2010
Judging Yourself By What Others Think Of You
Sociology makes my heart skip a beat -- a strange declaration, indeed. The reason why I chose sociology over psychology, although the two are ever-intertwined in the world of clinical social work, is because of the impact society, social relationships, and social roles have on our every day lives. We do not live in a vacuum of rugged individualism, but rather, we live in concert with our social environments, each layer building on the other to create the whole person. The more we understand this fact, the easier it will be to create lasting change at the macro level that will trickle down to us as individuals in the micro level (the way it should be).
The more time goes on, the more I see myself going on for my Ph.D. in medical sociology to study, teach, and do research on the psychological and social impact of illness and disability, including stigma, stress, spirituality, social roles, etc…The man who stole my heart (besides for my dad and Pat) is Erving Goffman, a large contributor to social theory in the form of symbolic interaction and the dramaturgical perspective. Basically, he studied social stress, stigma, and the impressions we give off to others, as well as the way we view others viewing us. Prevalent in today’s spiritually hungry society, we decide how we feel about ourselves by the way others view us. NOT GOOD. Instead of going inward to solve our dilemmas, we look outward – sometimes, to people we don’t even know or care about. When you think about it, does it make much sense to judge ourselves in this way? No, not at all, and Goffman creates the opportunity for you to notice these interactions in your every day lives.
I can go into more detail if anyone is interested.
Anywho, I need to run. Off to get acupuncture and start my other hormones!