John Mead 's Mind, Self, And Society Essay

1679 WordsDec 20, 20167 Pages
through his lectures/writings. He wanted to create a social utopia which, according to Mead, would include “expanding universal rights that enabled individuals to pursue their own interests” and at the same time “creating a more cooperative, united democratic order” (pg. 290). His famous book “Mind, Self, and Society” was in fact a compilation of notes which were taken by his students during his lectures in his social psychology course at the University of Chicago. This book plays very prominent role to social theory literature (pg. 290). It is from this text where Mead’s important key concepts are written. Mead’s three central themes in his work include the mind, symbols and language, and essence and meaning. Out of many, the three key concepts that we will discuss are: the “I” and the “Me”; Generalized other; and Taking the attitude of the other. Mead’s general orientation falls between the non rational and individual spectrum, therefore he is looking at the individuals rather than as a society and is thinking about ideas and beliefs rather than strategy. According to Mead, the concept of the “I” and the “Me”, the “I”, is the spontaneous, creative, and unpredictable aspect of the self, meaning that the “I” “represents the here-and-now, creative aspect of one’s self” (pg. 308). Therefore, the “I” is our true, raw self that is not filtered through society’s expectations/ideas etc. Therefore, the “I” must respond to the “Me” which is— the “organized set of attitudes of
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