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Ivan Kalmar (169)


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University of Toronto St. George
Ivan Kalmar

02.03.11 February-03-11 6:00 PM The Social Construction of the Self • Theory: Our concept of having a self (our "I" or "ego") is not entirely given by nature. • It is constructed in society, by signs, especially language. • Theory: Like colours and races, there is a continuum that language and signs construct as separate entities. • The self ("ego" or "I" is such a constructed entity. Jacques Lacan (1901-1981) • French psychoanalyst interpreted Freud. • In his theory, the self is linguistically constructed (the result of us having language). o Baby does not come into society with a sense of an individual self. o She lives in the real (experiences the world as unbounded). o With language, she learns the boundaries of things: • This is the symbolic stage (world experienced as consisting of bounded units). "I" • Each occurrence of "I" is a signifier, whose meaning is developed from relations to other signifiers … from other times I said "I" • • … and from times I heard others say "you" • … or my name. Inner Conversation • We are both "I" and "you" to ourselves. • In the inner conversation, one party coaches the other. • This "coach" is more influenced by society. • … it "represents" society. • Freud: "superego". • Our self is a conversation, and it includes a representation of society (the superego). The Forms of Language: Outline • Levels of linguistic (language) form: o Discourse analysis: Text and context. o Syntax: sentence structure. o Morphology: words and their structure. o Phonology: the sound system: • Phonemes. • Allophones. Double Articulation • Language consists of meaningful unites such as texts and words, and • … of meaningless units of sounds • … we are not discussing writing or letters. The Levels of Language • Meaningful units: • Texts (studied in discourse analysis) • Sentences (studied in syntax) • Words (studied in morphology) • Meaningless units (combine to make meaning): • Phonemes (studied in phonology) • Phones (studied in phonetics) Text • Text: o
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