Essay on Aspects of Interpersonal Communication in City Slickers

Essay on Aspects of Interpersonal Communication in City Slickers

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City Slickers is a movie chalk full of interpersonal communication, conflict, and messages. We watch as Mitch, a sad man without meaning in his life, goes on an adventure to find his smile and what matters most to him. Through conflict, power struggles, and much communication, he arrives at the end of the journey a new man.
Within the first few minutes of the movie, when the three couples are shown boarding the airplane, you see a display of power messages between Phil and his wife. His wife portrays an Aggressive Message with one line “Phil, I’m standing.” It shows that she doesn’t care that he was in the midst of a conversation, only that he was in her way. Phil then responds with a classic Nonassertive Message of “Yes, dear.” He then proceeds to stop his conversation abruptly and move toward their seats in effort to give her what she wants.
Self Concept is how one seems themselves, and it plays a large role in this film. Mitch sees himself deteriorating with old age. Barbara, his wife, points out how each year he finds a new illness or problem with himself as his birthday passes. He projects his concept of his self onto his physical being. He appears to have a low confidence level, a poor outlook on his life and sees himself in increasingly poor manner. That theory is later confirmed when he is at work and he is self disclosing to his boss through the line, “You ever reach a point in your life where you say to yourself, ‘This is the best I’m ever gonna look, the best I’m ever gonna feel, the best I’m ever gonna do, and it ain’t that great’?”
Nonverbal Communication is just what it sounds like, communicating without words. This movie is very good about displaying nonverbal communication toward the audience without breakin...


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...T.R., who were ganging up on Mitch. He nearly shoots one, sends them both to bed and continues to scream until his anger has subsided. This is a side of Phil that we can infer neither Ed, Mitch, the others, or even Phil knew of as they all have a look of shock on their faces.
Ed, Phil, and Mitch display Acculturation after Jeff and T.R. leave the cattle and the people behind. They take on the culture’s responsibility of finishing what they start and continue to drive the herd.
By the end of the movie, Mitch has found his smile, his self concept has improved, and his “one thing.” He finishes the Relationship Repair that he sought out when he began this journey. He learns to use productive conflict management strategies and enjoy life. He reaches The Adjustment stage when he brings home the happiness, morals, ethics, -- and Norman that he found on his adventure.

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