Class Notes (839,094)
Canada (511,185)
Sociology (3,307)

9 - Goffman & Stigma: Chapter 4-5

4 Pages

Course Code
Sociology 2259
Pamela Glatt

This preview shows page 1. Sign up to view the full 4 pages of the document.
Goffman & Stigma – Chapters 4-5 Chapter 4: • Examines how the stigmatized individuals is both “normal” yet “stigmatized” from various perspectives • We are all characters in the “social stigmatization drama” • Important to understand both points of view (the stigmatized vs. the normal) • Stigma management is a general feature of social life, a process that occurs whenever identity norms arise • Examines how the concept of “Deviance” is useful for studying the bridge between the study of “stigma” and the general study of the social world Stigmatizing Stigmas! • Important to understand the different types of stigma...not all stigmas are the same, or even comparable ◦ Also depends on who they're interacting with • What types of stigmas does society focus on? ◦ Mental illness, sexual orientation, drug use, etc • Other stigmas that most people wouldn't really consider to be stigmas off hand ◦ Tattoos, piercings, talking too much, etc. • When most people conceive the idea of stigma...they focus on very stigmatizing stigmas --> those that result in “unease” in almost any social situation ◦ Goffman: This is an inaccurate portrayal of the concept of “stigma” • To Goffman, normals represent an ordinary deviation from the mean ◦ This makes the “fully and visibly stigmatized” even more so discredited ◦ Argues that most people aren't normal at all—just an idealized norm The “Normal Curve” • Identity norms (rules/expectations on how we should) breed: ◦ Deviance ◦ Conformance • Can examine “stigma” using the idea of the “normal” curve ◦ Closest to the centre = normal deviations (more common stigmas) from the mean ◦ Outliers = uncommon deviations from the mean The Normative Predicament • Normative Predicament: problem of unsustained norms and possible outcomes of that predicament ◦ The result of identity norms breeding both deviations and conformance ◦ When someone doesn't fit into the certain norms that we have in society • 3 orientations/places in which a stigmatized individual may wish to locate themselves to handle the predicament: 1. Support/accept society's dichotomy (us vs. them), and participates as much as possible in “normal society”, but defines oneself as not fitting into the expected norms 2. Alienates/withdraw oneself from society, and become disconnected from “normal” society 3. Adapting to the norm, yet still remains attached to one's “own” • It's about a new alignment within an old frame of reference • An in-between of the first 2 Transformation • Transformation: the “normal” and the “stigmatized” are connected, part of the same role • They are extremes along a continuum (Normal Stigmatized) • The “normal” and the “stigmatized” have similar “mental make-ups” (thoughts/expectations) ...they both subscribe to the same standards in society ◦ Have the same ideas and understandings about what is considered normals and what is not normal • Those who can fit in/play out the standards to its fullest extent is considered “normal” while all others become labelled as “deviant” • Normal Deviant: new alignment within old frame of reference • Somebody can transform from being a normal into a deviant and/or back-and-forth 2-Role Social Process • 2-Role Social Process: Individual learns what is normal and what is deviant (similar to idea of front/back stage) ◦ “Normal” role—front stage ◦ “Deviant” role—back stage ◦ Over time people learn how, when, and in which setting to play both roles • Normal and stigmatized roles = more than complimentary --> include similarities and parallels ◦ Not as different as we think they are ◦ Normals and deviants often congregate with their own ◦ Both groups monitor their behaviour • 2-Headed Role Playing: the two roles (normal and deviant) ◦ Passing in both directions
More Less
Unlock Document

Only page 1 are available for preview. Some parts have been intentionally blurred.

Unlock Document
You're Reading a Preview

Unlock to view full version

Unlock Document

Log In


Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.