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Lecture 6

SOC 202 Lecture Notes - Lecture 6: Food Industry, Arab Spring, What Not To Wear (U.S. Tv Series)

Course Code
SOC 202
Nicole Neverson

of 5
Week 6
Culture, Identity, the Body, and Community
**We might not take an official break during today’s lecture due to the length of the
documentary scheduled for viewing.**
Conceptualizing Identity
1) The essentialists
From within
Claim of objectivity
2) The social constructivists/constructionists
Internal and external relationship
Social relations and power
3) Postmodernism/postmodernists
Abandon idea of objectivity
- scholars acknowledge we live in post modern times iwht no objective truth, or
knowledge that we all can agree on
- abandon idea that social world is made in a particular way
- different wyas to understand reality
- postmodernist tries to get us to think “ whos ojective should we follow?” .. answer is
no one’s.
- postmoderism is a form of society that is characteristized by advanced identity,
technicologyical developments, and the sharing of knowledge
Choice and power
- postmoderist believe we have a high degree of agency
- ability to choose, think critically, and to understand that even though our world is
structured according to politics, economics, limitations.. even tho limits exists,
agency tells us that we have the ability to rejecting, speaking out and resisting
- agency also means power.
Foucault (1979): Identity and Power
Discipline and Punish (1979)
Power, knowledge and social control
-he talked about the relationship between power, knowledge and social control
Social control and identity: The panopticon
Prison guards and inmates
- in these prisons, prisoners were no longer tortured by prison guards when they do
something wrong
- the reasoning is bc there is a different system
- Foucault says that prisoners are kept in check by the prison system such as:
The panopticon
- huge part of prison and how to keep them in check
- the panopticon gave them more control then beating ppl up in jail
- spotlight in centre of jail, rotating, able to see 365 degrees
- observe criminals and inmates of all times
- results in self-disciplining behaviour – prisons fear panopticon, they discipline
Results in self-disciplining behaviour
How does the Panopticon relate to identity formation?
Social world as disciplining force
- Shape our identities by constantly assessing of what society expects of us
Ex 1. Getting dressed
“technology of the self” = methods of self-surveillance
- deciding what clothes to wear, we are thinking of the panopticon
Ex 2: What Not To Wear
Ex 3. Bill C-30
- online surveillance law killed by gov’t- to scare people to not do things on internet
- if this bill went through, police wouldn’t neeed a warrant to ask for your computer
Bourdieu’s habitus
- Food industry, arts, economy, education, religion,
Example: the film industry
- Any social space of a structure of any social power
Habitus is a response to social fields
- We use our systems and thoughts, the term of ideology to Bourdieu is habitus
How do we cultivate a sense of self? (Grossberg, et al., 1998)
1) Politically
2) Socially
3) Culturally