Mead was driven by a desire to understand the relationship between individuals and societies; between a self and others. As simple as it might seem, one profound insight he had was that a person’s sense of self emerges from interaction with others (social interaction/society) and that societies emerge from interactions among people’s selves. Neither the self nor society can exist without the other. This simple premise has vast implications for human behavior and communication in particular which are explored in this chapter. In this summary of the symbolic interaction theory, the focus will be on those elements that have the most immediate application to human communication and/or have been most broadly embraced.
Redmond, Mark V., "Symbolic Interactionism" (2015). English Technical Reports and White Papers. 4.