SOC601 – The Looking Glass Self and Cooley


What makes you, “you”? Well, sociologists love to answer this question by saying that you are a social object– a combination of the environments, people, cultures, social experiences, and structures around you. And no one is more prolific than theorist Charles Cooley in establishing this! So, this week, we’re exploring the work of Cooley and his concept of The Looking Glass Self. Tune in to learn more about how you are who you think others think you are.


Self, self-esteem, self-concept, social psychology


You can find the transcript for this episode here. Mahalo nui loa to Angela Smith for helping us transcribe this one!!


  • The man of the (half)hour is Charles Cooley, whom you can read about here.
  • A nice summary of the Looking Glass Self can be found here.
  • Read Morris Rosenberg’s (1979) Conceiving the Self here.
  • Ellen is a fan of Erich Fromm and Escape from Society (1994).
  • Want to cry? Watch Adam Sandler’s “Click” (during a vulnerable time in your life, so don’t judge us Rotten Tomatoes with your 34% rating).
  • RIP Queen Elizabeth II!

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