Discussion of the Situational and Developmental Views in a Scene from Titanic

1687 Words Nov 23rd, 2011 7 Pages
Discussion of the Situational and Developmental Views in a Scene from Titanic

Interpersonal communication plays a major role in everyone’s daily life. Because it is so important, theorists have developed two views about how to determine whether a transaction is interpersonal or not. We will be looking at the situational and the developmental view by applying it to a scene from a movie in order to determine which one is a better indicator. The particular scene that will be discussed is a scene from James Cameron’s Titanic. The scene takes place the day after Jack sees Rose hanging off the edge of the ship while she debates whether she should jump or not. Jack convinces her not to jump, and she agrees. But, her foot slips and Jack saves
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At the start of their conversation Jack and Rose “chew over how great the weather has been,” “how I [Jack] grew up” and other trivial matters. This is known as extrinsic communication, where the appropriate content of the conversation pertains to the extent that the two communicators know each other. As the conversation progresses, their relationship becomes more intrinsic as the communicative rules start to be defined by the communicators themselves rather than outside social forces. For example, when Rose continues to call Jack “Mr. Dawson,” Jack interrupts her and asks her to simply call him “Jack.”
As the communicators begin to further their transactions their levels of knowing also start to change. The levels go from descriptive, where one is able to physically describe a person well enough to distinguish him/her from others, to predictive –where one can accurately predict someone’s behavior in a particular situation. As mentioned earlier, when Jack and Rose first start talking they must rely solely on social and cultural information to make predictions about each other because it is all they have available to them. During the course of their conversation Rose coquettishly asks Jack what he “sees in her” now that the two know a little more about each other. He replies by saying, “You wouldn’t have jumped.” Now that he knows her better Jack can predict, to some extent, how