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Interactionism is a generic sociological perspective that brings under its umbrella a number of subperspectives:
"Interactionism" is an American sociological current that analyzes the social interaction. George Herbert Mead, as an advocate of pragmatism and the subjectivity of social reality, is regarded as being at the origin of this development.
The social interaction is a face-to-face process consisting of actions, reactions, and mutual adaptation between two or more individuals. The interaction includes all language (including body language) and mannerisms. The goal of the social interaction is to communicate with others. If the interaction is in danger of ending before one intends it to, it can be conserved by conforming to the others' expectations, by ignoring certain incidents or by solving apparent problems. Erving Goffman underlines the importance of control in the interaction. One must attempt to control the others' behaviour during the interaction, in order to attain the information one is seeking and in order to control the perception of one's own image. Important concepts in the field of interactionism include the "social role" and Goffman's "presentation of self".
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