Blog 3: Mead’s theory of mind and the self

Mead’s theory is the development of mind and the self occurred through three forms of activity language, play and the game. These activities are language, play, and game. Language lets people take on the “role of the other”. Play allows people to take on the roles of others and pretend to be those other people during the role play. The process of role play is the key to the development of self consciousness and development of the self. In the game, people are obliged to assume the roles of all others who take part in the game and must understand the rules of the game.

Mead defines the mind as a kind of conversation that people have with themselves. The self is a type of mental process in which a person is able to take oneself as an object. The capability to take oneself as an object develops in the childhood years through two key stages. In the play stage the child learns to play the role of someone else, and in the game stage the child learns to play the role of everyone involved in a game. The final stage leads to the child’s capability to take the place of the generalized other, or to see itself from the perspective of a community. When the development of the self is complete, the child gains the ability to differentiate between the I and the me.

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2 responses to “Blog 3: Mead’s theory of mind and the self

  1. It is so interesting to see how Mead views people and the way they interact. Ever since I learnt about Mead I have noticed these ideas in my own thoughts and interactions with others.

  2. Right off the bat, Mead reminds me of Freud with all of the stages and self theories. Although I do think that Mead’s theory is far less compelx and is actual easy to understand compared to Freud who is quite challenging to understand. I do think that Mead makes valid points in his theory, especially when he says that when the child develops their own sense of self, then they are able to see the difference between “me” and “i.” Role playing is definitely an integral part of developing the sense of self.

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