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Title: From the ecology of the human spirit to the development of the orchestral theory of communication: the inclusion of the medium-message axiom
Author: Lopes, Maria da Conceição de Oliveira
Keywords: Ecology of the human spirit
Issue Date: 2011
Publisher: IATED
Abstract: The contributions of the biologist, anthropologist and communication theorist Gregory Bateson (1904- 1980) form the nucleus of the cross-disciplinary theoretical principles which led to the founding of the web of thought spun by Watzlawick, Weakland, Beavin, Fish, Jackson, Erickson, Foster, Haley and Satir, amongst others. These authors were united by a common theoretical standpoint which foregrounded the ecology of the human spirit and saw communication as process, a system of transactional interaction. They were also similarly influenced by cybernetics, systems theory and constructivism. Energised by the clash of the ideas in their exchanges, they constructed the orchestral theory of communication, formalised by Paul Watzlawick, Donald Jackson and Janet Beavin. Today, Watzlawick (1967) is regarded as a seminal publication in the annals of interpersonal communication studies. Moving beyond the confines of the original object of study – face-to-face communication – this theory has been increasingly applied to the analysis of institutionally mediated communication and to the understanding of the construction of learning and change in organisations. However, in current circumstances, its set of axiomatic principles would benefit from the inclusion of a medium-message axiom to allow a fuller understanding of the realities of the mediated communication process that the process contains. This paper proposes the inclusion of this new axiom, medium-message; a proposal which is based on the work of Gregory Bateson, the ecology of the human spirit, the orchestral theory of communication and the thinking of the Media Ecology Association. It aims to help build a more profound insight into the realities of the process of human communication.
Peer review: yes
ISBN: 978-84-614-7423-3
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Appears in Collections:ID+ - Comunicações

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