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The Interaction between the Self and the Society: A Case Study on Kobe Bryants New Image

In sociology, the concept of social reality is simply expressed and defined as the interaction of the individual or the Self with his/her surrounding, the person's "reality" as s/he perceives it. For a social reality to become real, there must be interaction and existence between the individual and the society. Although not manifested physically, the society interacts with the individual in numerous ways, shaping the way s/he thinks and perceives his/her Self. Interaction between the individual and society, indeed, determines one of the most important studies on sociology—that is, how the members of the society construct and give meaning to their social realities as they experience and perceive it. The dynamic process of the social experience is mirrored in the sociological tradition of symbolic interactionism, which studies the behavior of the individuals and societies through observation and description. In symbolic interactionism, people's appearance, gestures, and language serve as representations, or symbols, that people use when they interact in social situations. Through this method, social experience and meaning are developed both by the individual and by the society, enabling social scientists study the interaction, meaning, and significance of social actions and experiences to the society in general. Using the case study of basketball player Kobe Bryant, this paper studies in detail information regarding Bryant's transformation (as he faces charges of sexual molestation) from being an athlete to being a believer of God, a "responsible" and "good" man. Utilizing theories for and against symbolic interactionism, this paper looks at the similarities and differences in which Bryant's experience has altered his image not only as a basketball player, but also mainly as an individual interacting with his society. After cases of sexual assault and molestation had been cha...

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The Interaction between the Self and the Society: A Case Study on Kobe Bryants New Image. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 03:54, July 03, 2015, from