Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Intrapersonal Communication and related theories

Intrapersonal communication is one-way communication. 

Individual contemplation, internal reflection, prayers, etc. are types of intrapersonal communication. This type can also be termed as a form of internal persuasion. There are two types of messages, nonverbal and verbal. Examples of nonverbal communication are facial expressions, posture, gestures, tone of voice, touching, spacing and systematic use of time. Verbal communication can be divided into three disciplines; syntactics,semantics, and pragmatics.

In the persuasion context, one person is attempting to induce change in the belief, attitude, or  behavior in one other person. 

For example: Jane persuading her sister Sarah to lend her pearls for Jane school party.

In the persuasion context, there are various theories that explain internal communication : 

Balance Theory

This theory advocated by Fritz Heider and Theodore Newcomb in 1946 states that when tensions arise between or inside people, they attempt to reduce these tensions through self-persuasion or trying to persuade others.

               Balance theory proposes that there are three ways in which a person can feel balance. First the source and receiver can both dislike as well as like each other, so they experience comfort and balance. Second, the source and receiver can have a positive attitude toward an object or idea and display positive feelings toward one another, therefore experiencing comfort and balance. Third, the source and the receiver can disagree about an idea or object and also dislike each other, therefore experiencing comfort because they know that they disagree about the values of certain objects or ideas.

                 Example: Mary likes to do things in a planned, orderly manner and Joe does not like orderliness in everything.Yet Mary likes Adam, and values their relationship therefore this system is now in imbalance. If Mary would change her attitude about orderliness in everything, this system would be in balance.

Cognitive Dissonance Theory

 This theory propagated by Leon Festinger in 1962 says that human beings often have conflicting beliefs with actions they take, or other beliefs they have. This dissonance creates a tension and tension reduction is automatically sought by changing our evaluations by some degree. Cognitive Dissonance is when you have two good choices and you make your decision then you find yourself unsure or in doubt about the choice you made. 

         The theory of Cognitive Dissonance implies that when there is tension we change a belief or an action. Many times selective exposure is used which prevents dissonance. This theory also implies that we experience more dissonance when the issue is more important, when we put off a decision and the decision is permanent.

                 Example: When marketers want to persuade their audience to buy a product they must convince them that this is a good action and if their beliefs do not match this action, they must persuade them to change their beliefs. For instance if a health drink is introduced in the market, and some consumers feel that it is really not essential that they switch over to the new product from their usual cereal, the advertisers will have to focus on the fact the health drink contains health benefits such as cholesterol fighting, fat reducing ingredients that their usual cereal lacks.

Information Manipulation Theory (IMT)

 Theorist Steve A. McCornack  propounded this theory in 1992. This states that a speaker  purposefully and covertly violates one of the conversational maxims of quantity, quality, relationand manner with the intention of deceiving his/her listener.

                Example:  X has an important school project due Wednesday. His professor does not accept late papers.Monday night he went to the soccer match and didn't start on the paper. Tuesday night he browsed the net for information related to the project and managed to almost finish the project. 

Wednesday morning, X overslept and arrived only after class was over. He goes to see his professor immediately after. How will he answer his professor on why he wasn't in class to turn in his paper?Quantity: "I am sorry professor. I overslept."Quality: "Our power got cut and my alarm didn't go off."Relation: "I've had a really bad week. I had a fight with my roommate, I forgot to pay the electricity bill, the electricity was turned off and my boss has threatened to fire me if Iâm late again."Manner: "I badly need to score well in this project. My paper was already finished, I just overslept".

The Inoculation Theory (1961) 

by William McGuire
states that inoculation is used to describe the attribution of greater resistance to individuals or the process of supplying information to receivers before the communication process takes place in the hope that the information would make the receiver more resistant.

             This theory stresses on the importance of the nature of the presentation of the message. One method involves passive reading in which receivers read the defensive material.Another method is to read the material and underline the passages relating to the arguments presented in the defense.

       Next, experimenters supply an outline where the defensive material is to be written out. The last method is to write out the arguments without any help.

        Example: McGuire's basic method included constructing a persuasive message attacking a cultural truism such as, An apple a day, keeps the doctor away. This message would contain statements like eating too many apples can cause digestive problems. Prior to this message, material would be introduced that should strengthen the belief in the truism.

Rank's Model of Persuasion , 1976

 (Theorist: Hugh Rank) states that persuaders use two major strategies to achieve their goals. These strategies are nicely set into two main schemas known as 
(1) intensify , and 
(2) downplay

 The persuader will do this in one of four methods.
1) Intensify their own strong points.
2) Intensify the weak points of the opposition.
3) Downplay their own weak points.
4) Downplay the strong points of the opposition.

          Example: While arguing about their favorite movies, Damien continues to insist to Joey that the Terminator movies were much better than the Matrix movies. Rank's Model contends that Damien will use one of four main strategies to argue his point to Joey. 

He will either:

1) Stress the great performances that were given by Terminator lead actor Arnold Schwarzeneger,while pointing out the acclaim that he received for the movies, OR 

2) Stress what he believed was poor acting by Matrix lead actor Keanu Reeves, OR 

3) Downplay the weak points of the Terminator movies, OR 

4) Downplay the terrific performance by the Matrix actors