Term Paper: Monological Model

Pages: 5 (1519 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Communication  ·  Buy This Paper

¶ … Jabri, Adrain, and Boje (2008) on alternatives to the monological model is fascinating in that it causes us not only to think about communication in an alternate way but also reverses paradigms in other factors too. Jabri, Adrain, and Boje (2008) submit that Western culture emphasizes the monological model due to its tendency of viewing the recipient of communication as an I-it (I.e. object) rather than as an I-Thou and therefore one ends up addressing the other in a peremptory or objective, detached manner. Perceiving the other, however, as complex person would stimulate a multi-dialogic strand of communication and this would replace the monological model. As prescription, accordingly, Jabri, Adrain, and Boje (2008) see Bakhtin's approach as more suited to a constructive mode of communicating.

Expanding on Jabri, Adrain, and Boje's (2008) thoughts, it seems to me that the monological model may be more suited to a specific historical and geographical context and time. Certain periods such as the modern ages may be more demonstrative of the monological model than may be an earlier period. Similarly, too, certain countries, such as America, may be representative of the monological model than other countries / continents such as India may be. Jabri, Adrain, and Boje (2008) fail to particularize but their underlying observations are interesting and acute. Their discussion may be slanted in that it fails to analyze a sufficiently required cross-sample of people as well as being limited to one period of time rather than being longitudinal as such a complex subject requires. Nonetheless, their research has value in its originality and potential contributions. By seeing people as the subjects in communication rather than the objects in communication, organizations and individuals can better their communication. The consensus-as-dialogue approach, rather than consensus-as-monologue perspective helps one see conversation amongst people as a never-ending process. This provides a different perspective on participation where one person's message joins with that of another and the person's meaning with that of another is seen as offered rather than seen as objectively given and static.

The Monological approach

The monological approach sees conversation as one-logic i.e. proceeding in one direction. Examples abound such as organizations requiring that members 'agree with our proposed change please." This is intended not so much s a question but the language rather implies an expectation that communicants should agree, or else.. Even when diverse points-of-view exist, the focus is on achieving a consensus and, thereby, by not seeing individuals as a multiplicity, clumps all in one homogeneity and expects a static, common ground for all.

Jabri, Adrain, and Boje (2008) point out that this static perspective of communication may have traditional roots reaching way back to Aristotle who saw communication as one of rhetoric, namely persuasion, where communication was a strategy for influencing people and helping them see reason, or the truth. In this way, the 'other' became viewed as object, communication was one way (monological) and the objective was how to best seduce the other to one's way of thinking. Theorists in the 16th century expanded on Aristotle's ideas and seperated the study of how we reason to their study of how we present ideas. According to Taylor (2001), this reduction culminated in reducing conversation, depersonalizing words, and converting them into ideas rather than seeing the complexity of the speaker behind the words. It also led to glossing over the complexity of the words themselves with their manifold messages.

In more recent times, however, communication scholars attempt to show people that communication is also about our unique perspective and interpretation of the world, not just about delivery and ideas, and that language (in all its multiplicity and complexity) serves as medium for conveying our slanted and biased perspective. "The goal of language ahs becomes that of constructing shared meaning" (669). However, most current working models of communication, according to Jabri, Adrain, and Boje (2008), are monological in that they either see communication as instrument of change (as in "please do as I say" or the educational discourse) or tend to perceive communication as instrumental in allowing people more opportunity to involve them in change.

Jabri, Adrain, and Boje (2008) see both models as being too limiting in that "people need to recursively communicate and connect with people." They, therefore, propose an alternative fashioned upon Bakhtin's anthropology

Bakhtin's conception of language

Bakhtin sees the essence of an individual as constituting a strong, unique self and he sees this vibrant self as being grounded in communication. Knowledge and insight of matter is gained only via polyphony, i.e. when you have a number of people communicating in sync and listening to one another; when you have a collaboration of communication, rather than the situation of one person speaking at another. Bakhtin's notion of polyphony can help one understand organizational learning as well as the process of crating meaning, amongst giving us other insights into the process of communication. Bakhtin sees meaning in speech as a continual process. All conversational episodes are dialogic in that a person's "self-conscious lives on its uninfalizedness, its open-mindedness, and indeterminacy" ( Bakhtin, 1984, 43; quoted Jabri, et al. (2008), 670). Meanings are continuous and dynamic rather than static since one person's communication or conversation causes another to respond and so meaning comes from the "contact between the word and the concrete reality" (Bakhtin, 87) as the reality is shaped by a person's word causing the other to respond to it. People therefore become free agents standing outside the one-sided communication that the monological perspective sees communication to be. Jabri, Adrain, and Boje's (2008) propose replacing the modern idea of communication (i.e. The monological approach) with a Bakhtin perspective of communication. Doing so would be advantageous to current society in more ways than one transforming us from a greedy, self-centered, egoistic, narrow-minded society that is focused on telling the other what to do rather than seeing the richness of the other for what it is, into a Bakhtin approach where the complexity and subjectivity of the other is recognized and responded to.

Reflections

It seems to me, too, that expanding on Jabri, Adrain, and Boje's (2008) thoughts, the monological model may be more suited to a specific historical and geographical space and time. Certain periods such as the modern ages may be more demonstrative of the monological model than may be an earlier period. Similarly, too, certain countries, such as America, may be representative of the monological model than other countries / continents such as India may be. Jabri, Adrain, and Boje (2008) fail to particularize but their underlying observations are interesting and acute. Their discussion may be slanted in that it fails to analyze a sufficiently required cross-sample of people as well as being limited to one period of time rather than being longitudinal as such a complex subject requires. Nonetheless, their research has value in its originality and potential contributions. By seeing people as the subjects in communication rather than the objects in communication, organizations and individuals can better their communication. The modern idea of communication relies on a linguistic, grammatical base. As a result of contributions such as those of Saussure (who suggested that the study of language and speech be separated and that emphasis be placed on language as a social institution of the word), "communication became centered on what the speaker says.. Meaning became fixed and language was simply a code for transmitting information" (Bakhtin, 89) this became a consensus-as-monologue approach where speakers focused on language as instrument for transmitting information.

Bakhtin, however, distinguished utterances from sentences, seeing sentences as static, fixed in time, and easy to dissect whilst the utterance, as a whole, being embodied in other people is continuous and complex. This is known as consensus-as-dialogue approach. The consensus-as-dialogue approach, rather than consensus-as-monologue perspective helps see conversation amongst people as a never-ending… [END OF PREVIEW]

Business Models Evolution Article


Competency-Based Education Models Term Paper


Public Figures Should Not Be Obliged to Act as Role Models Essay


Goals of the Consensus Model Term Paper


Mental Models in Contemporary Education -- Case Essay


View 1,000+ other related papers  >>

Cite This Term Paper:

APA Format

Monological Model.  (2012, February 5).  Retrieved September 15, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/monological-model/20313

MLA Format

"Monological Model."  5 February 2012.  Web.  15 September 2019. <https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/monological-model/20313>.

Chicago Format

"Monological Model."  Essaytown.com.  February 5, 2012.  Accessed September 15, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/monological-model/20313.