Textbook Notes (368,326)
Canada (161,799)
Sociology (1,513)
SOC100H5 (538)
Chapter 3

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Nathan Innocente

Chapter 3 NotesTo be actualized socializationmust unleash this potential Socialization is the process by which people learn their culture They do so by 1 entering into and disengaging from a succession of roles and 2 becoming aware of themselves as they interact with others A roleis the behaviour expected of a person occupying a particular position in societySpitzs natural experiment thus amounts to quite compelling evidence for the importance of childhood socialization in making us fully human Without childhood socialization most of our human potential remains undeveloped Comparing children in nursing homes to children in orphanages The operation and relative influence of societys main socializing institutions or agents of socialization families schools peer groups and the mass media Social interaction soon enables infants to begin developing a selfimage or sense of self a set of ideas and attitudes about who they are as independent beingsSigmund Freudproposed the first socialscientific interpretation of the process by which the self emerges He noted that infants demand immediate gratification but begin to form a selfimage when their demands are deniedwhen for example parents decide not to feed and comfort them every time they wake up in the middle of the night The parents refusal at first incites howls of protest However infants soon learn to eat more before going to bed sleep for longer periods and go back to sleep if they wake up Equally important the infant begins to sense that its needs differ from those of its parents it has an existence independent of others and it must somehow balance its needs with the realities of life Soon a personal conscience crystallizes It is a storehouse of cultural standards In addition a psychological mechanism develops that normally balances the pleasureseeking and restraining components of the self Freud called the pleasureseeking component of the self the idthe restraining component the superegoand the balancing mechanism the egoEarlier thinkers believed that the self emerges naturally the way a seed germinates In a revolutionary departure from previous thinking on the subject Freud argued that only social interaction can allow the self to emergeCharles Horton CooleyCharles Horton Cooley introduced the idea of the lookingglass selfmaking him a founder of the symbolicinteractionist tradition and an early contributor to the sociological study of socialization Cooley observed that when we interact with others they gesture and react to us This allows us to imagine how we appear to them We then judge how others evaluate us Finally from these judgments we develop a selfconcept or a set of feelings and ideas about who we are In other words our feelings about who we are depend largely on how we see ourselves evaluated by others Just as we see our physical body reflected in a mirror so we see our social selves reflected in peoples gestures and reactions to us we have the hallmarks of what came to be known as symbolic interactionismthe idea that in the course of facetoface communication people engage in a creative process of attaching meaning to thingsGeorge Herbert Mead
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