About This Book
Continuing its engaging and readable approach, this second edition presents an overview of the major theories within the discipline of communication studies inclusive of the three major paradigms of social scientific, interpretive, and critical.
Each member of the author team writes from his or her area of expertise, giving readers further insight into how the theory is applied to research within communication studies. With extensive pedagogical features, the text underscores key concepts and links them to students' own communication studies scholarship and everyday lives. Key updates for this edition include updated examples and discussions around theories to give students a deeper understanding; explorations of Black Lives Matter and intersectionality; andnew pedagogical features in line with Bloom's taxonomy.
This book is ideal as a core text for undergraduate courses in communication theory.
Online resources also accompany the text: an instructor manual, test bank, lecture slides, and author introduction videos. Please visit www.routledge.com/9781032015194 to access the materials.
INQUIRING MINDS WANT TO KNOW
HOW WE THINK ABOUT COMMUNICATION
- Communication is a process. Communication is something we do. As a process, communication unfolds over time, and what happens at one point can affect what occurs later. If a friend violates your trust by sharing information that you expected her to keep secret, that communication act might prevent you from confiding in her the next time you have something to share.
- Communication is symbolic. We can never get into other people’s brains to know exactly what they’re thinking, so we rely on symbols, which are representations of ideas, to understand one another. Words are symbols. The word tree isn’t actually a tree; it just represents the idea of one. Gestures, facial expressions, and many other communicative behaviors are also symbols because they signify ideas.
- Communication focuses on meaning. Because communication is symbolic, an important task is to figure out what meaning, or message, each symbol conveys. When you say, “I love you,” what does that mean? What message are you sending through your posture or through your silence? You’ve probably had the experience of being misunderstood and telling another person, “That isn’t what I meant.” If so, then you understand how challenging the process of meaning-making can be.
- Communication is ever present. Finally, communication is with us constantly. Your behaviors can send messages to other people whether you intend those messages or not. Have you ever tried hard to stay awake during class? In spite of your efforts to look interested, your slouching posture and droopy eyelids were likely communicating your fatigue to others. Likewise, you are continually receiving messages from the people around you, whether those messages are intentional or unintentional.