Tyler’s Discipline and Control


For this blog post I decided cowrite about discipline and control. The definition of discipline according to Oxford Dictionaries is, “The practice of training people to obey rules or a code of behavior, using punishment to correct disobedience,” (Oxford Dictionaries) I view this word in a very similar manner, because discipline is way of controlling ones behavior to match what is right or wrong or to reflect a society’s standards. Control is defined by oxford dictionaries as “the power to influence or direct people’s behavior or the course of events” (Oxford dictionaries) Through out this blog post I will explain how these two concepts relate to non verbal communication and how they will relate to interpersonal communication, visual rhetoric, and mediated communication.


Interpersonal communication


Interpersonal communication ties into discipline and control in such a way that ties the ideas together. The author of the book, Nonverbal Behavior in Interpersonal Relations, speaks of how touch is a form of interpersonal communication and how it control and individuals behaviors (Richmond). For example, When a parent spanks his/ her child, he/ she is inflicting some kind of discipline facilitated through touch that causes a small form of pain which the in turn controls the child’s behavior in the times to come. One study has shown that spanking is actually good for kids because it teaches them that there is a little bit of pain associated with bad behavior (thenewamerican). When a mother or father inflicts a healthy amount of pain and fear into a child due to bad behavior, the child will think twice before participating in the bad behavior later on down the road. These two concepts can be seen together and even linked to each other through this example, and are tied to interpersonal communication between the parent and the child. Non verbal communication is blatantly obvious because the mother or father does not have to say a single word for the child to understand that what he/ she did was wrong and should not be done again.


Visual rhetoric

Visual rhetoric can display these two ideas of discipline and control. Back in the late 1800s and the early 1900s, lynching was a norm in u american society. According to dictionary.com, Lynching is “to put to death, especially by hanging, by mob action and without legal authority” (Dictionary.com). These pictures were placed on post cards and could be sent to relatives and others. Discipline was reinforced by this type of visual rhetoric because it made sure that the African Americans of that time knew that this could happen to them if they stepped outside of the societal norms and went against the white folk. The picture above is a perfect example of what would have been seen on one of these post cards (legendsofamerica). When an African American would see this it would remind them of their place in society and that they should not be “bad” therefore influencing and controlling how this group of people would continue to act. This was a difficult time for this population because they had to watch everything they did and said when around others due to the fear of being discipline by death by the white folks. Through the fear of discipline displayed through the post card, the caucasian population of the times were able to control the actions of of the African Americans of the time. This is tied to non verbal communication because the  African American only had to see the post card to know that he/ she better not step out of line. Nobody had to tell them that they would be lynched if they were out of line


Mediated communication

Mediated communication can be seen through how a person will use texting. The fear of discipline or ridicule from a parent is what will control and action. For example, on of my best friends has smoke weed before, and when he did he texted me and told me what he was doing, but did not text his mother to tell her. The fear of what his mother would say was the one thing that kept him from telling her. The fear of ridicule or even discipline is what control his thought process of who he should tell that he is smoking an illegal drug. He later told me that is was the reason that he did not tell his mother. His mother is a respirator therapist and doesn’t like smoking at all, and then to add the fact that it was an illegal drug would have made his life that much more difficult because of the ridicule and discipline that he would have to experience, thus resulting in a control of whether or not to send this information to his mother. This is tied to non verbal because he did not even have to hear what his mother would say to dow that she would not approve.



The definition of lynching. (n.d.). Retrieved December 13, 2016, from http://www.dictionary.com/browse/lynching

Richmond, Virginia P., James C. McCroskey, and Mark Hickson. Nonverbal Behavior in Interpersonal Relations. 7th ed. Boston: Pearson/Allyn & Bacon, 2012. Print.

“Discipline.” English Oxford Living Dictionaries. Oxford, n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2016.

“Control.” English Oxford Living Dictionaries. Oxford, n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2016.

Lynchings and Hangings in American History – Page 8. (n.d.). Retrieved December 13, 2016, from http://www.legendsofamerica.com/ah-lynching8.html

New Study Finds Spanking Is Good for Kids. (n.d.). Retrieved December 13, 2016, from http://www.thenewamerican.com/culture/family/item/548-new-study-finds-spanking-is-good-for-kids


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