What’s the difference between a ‘reflective’ person and a ‘reflexive’ person?

The following is a slogan from a German public transport campaign, which, I think… is a brilliant definition of ‘reflexivity’.


“You’re not stuck in a traffic jam, you are the jam.”

2 thoughts on “What’s the difference between a ‘reflective’ person and a ‘reflexive’ person?

  1. I really do not understand it. I may be part of the jam but not the jam itself. The Jam is not just the sum of the cars stopped or crawling along the road. There are reasons for the slow down, an accident for instance.
    Then perhaps the department responsible for the roads, the makers of road vehicles who only want to sell cars and make money are all other factors which could be said to be part of the jam.

  2. Hi there – with any analogy, it breaks down under too much scrutiny.

    However, this is a reference to a point I was trying to make in a previous blog. See https://gohbyname.wordpress.com/2011/04/21/%E2%80%9Creflexivity%E2%80%9D/

    Reflection is like looking at a relational episode through a mirror. You reflecting on what you see.

    Reflectivity, however, is the ability to notice why things are the way they are, in particular your part in it. It’s about noticing patterns and asking how one’s own world view, values, socialisation, ideology, biases, etc create the social reality…

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