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Lecture 3

SOC103 Lecture 3 Notes

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University of Toronto St. George
Lorne Tepperman

SOC103 Lecture 3 – Roles, Networks, and Organizations The dramaturgical approach • Associated with symbolic interactionism, specifically Erving Goffman • There are things that operate like scripts Scripts, roles, and identities • Roles are sets of actions that are expected of us in particular settings • Scripts are the behaviours that we are expected to follow • Identities are different from one person to another o We can’t guess what a person’s identity might be o The dramaturgical approach says that identities are developed out of the roles that they play  It is a stupid approach if it leads to bad decisions  However, it leads to some pretty good predictions Why we need scripts • We don’t have complete scripts that cover every eventuality • We only have rough scripts The link between roles and identities • Generally, identities do not become roles One approach: Labeling theory • How do we form a judgement of ourselves? • We learn this by seeing how other people behave towards us • We infer how we should evaluate ourselves o Some people have more influence Labeling is a two-sided sword • We want to have many positive labels (empowerment) and few negative labels (incapacitation) • We are responding to other’s people responses to us Negative labeling can lead to secondary deviance • At the extreme, labeling can have long-term effects on people’s behaviour o This applies to people who break rules • Secondary deviance is behaviour that responds to negative labeling to a primary deviance • Negative labeling has at least one of two effects o Change in self concept o Change in group affiliation • There isn’t as much concern for labeling adult offenders • We are more concerned with the effect of labeling on juveniles How we position ourselves in roles: Embracement versus distance • Role embracement o May or may not have been chosen • Role distance o Constantly being ironic or stepping away Roles become identities through internalization • Through repetition and embracement, we come to internalize the roles we play Learning roles is a lifelong effort • Military wives lead extremely scripted lives o When they become widows, they have to move out of the military base o This is a huge change in roles and changes in identities Role-making versus role-taking • Subcultures are social locations where people can invent new roles and scripts that exist outside the mainstream population The influence of peers in taking and making new identities • Once we become adolescents, we rely on our peers to
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