SOCA01H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 4: Hidden Curriculum, Virtual Community, Thomas Theorem

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SocioNotes | Chapter 4
Chapter 4: Socialization
Social Isolation & the Crystallization of Self Identity
Wild boy of Aveyron [was isolated from humans, and thus, abnormal]
Suffer from congenitally subnormal intelligence
o Uncertain how much or what type of social control they had before
Socialization: process by which ppl learn their culture
o Unleashes human potential
o They do so by:
1. Entering and disengaging from a succession of roles
2. Becoming aware of themselves as they interact with others
Role: the behaviour expected of a person occupying a particular position
Rene Spitz: did natural experiment:
o Children raised in prisons vs. those raised in an orphanage
o Prison children had normal growth; orphans growth was much slower
o Concluded childhood socialization (social contact) is important in making us fully human
w/o childhood socialization, human potential remains undeveloped
adolescence: turbulent period of rapid self development
agents of socialization: families, schools, peer groups, mass media
Theories of Childhood Socialization
founder of psychoanalysis
theory: self emerges during early social interaction and early childhood experience exerts a
lasting impact on personality development
Self Image/ Sense of Self: set of ideas and attitudes about who they are as independent beings
o Self image begins to emerge as soon as id’s demands are denied
Child eventually develops a sense of what constitutes appropriate behaviour
Unconscious: part of self that contains repressed memories we are not aware of
o Emergence of superego is painful/frustrating process
o Repressed memories influence emotions/actions even after they’re stored away
o Painful instances of childhood repression may cause psychological problems
o Requiring therapy to correct
o Some repression is the cost of civilization
When ego fails to balance the needs of id and the superego, individuals develop personality
SocioNotes | Chapter 4
Components of the Well Adjusted Self [Freud]:
CRITICISM of Freud’s argument:
o 1. The connection b/w early childhood development and adult personality are more
complex than Freud assumed
Failed to anticipate that depth, problem solving ability, maturity might derive
from painful experiences
o 2. Gender bias in Freud’s analysis of male and female sexuality
Freud: normal women are immature n dependent on men b/c they envy male
sexual organ
Classified mature and independent women as abnormal
o 3. For neglecting socialization AFTER childhood
Freud: believed human personality is fixed at about age 5
WRONG! Socialization continues throughout the life course
Cooleys Symbolic Interactionism
Charles Horton Cooley:
o Introduced idea of the “looking glass self
o Founder of symbolic Interactionism
o Observed that when we interact with others, they gesture and react to us
Allows us to imagine how we appear to them
We then judge how others evaluate us
From these judgements, we develop a self concept or a set of feelings/ideas of
who we are
o our feelings about who we are depend largely on how we see ourselves evaluated by
EGO: balances conflicting needs
of pleasure seeking id and
restraining superego
demands immediate
repository of cultural standards
[personal conscience]
SocioNotes | Chapter 4
o just as we see physical body reflected in the mirror, we see our social selves reflected in
people’s gestures and reactions to us
o young women seem to me MOST prone to such behaviour
o women having difficulty in achieving ideal body weight/shape promoted by mass media
George Herbert Mead
Developed idea of the looking glass self
Agreed with Freud
I: subjective & impulsive aspect of the self that is present from birth
Me: the objective component of the self that emerges as people communicate symbolically and
learn to take the role of the other
o Unique human capacity to “take the role of the other”
o All human communication depends on being able to take the role of the other
Ex. Interpreting mother’s smile
o Me is not present from birth, emerges gradually with social interaction
Self as developing in 4 stages of role taking:
1. Children learn to use language and other symbols by imitating important people in their lives,
such as mother and father: significant others
2. Children pretend to be other people
a. Ex: role imaginations such as ‘house’, ‘doctor,’ ‘school’
3. When they reach about age 7, children learn to play complex games requiring they
simultaneously take the role of several other people
a. Ex: baseball infielders
4. Taking role of generalized other: person’s image of cultural standards & how they apply to him
Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget:
Divided development of thinking [or cognitive] skills during childhood years into 4 stages:
o Sensorimotor stage: 1st two yrs of life
Children explore world through their 5 senses
Cannot think using symbols
o Preoperational Stage: b/w ages 2-7
Children begin to think symbolically
Language and imagination blossom
Still unable to think abstractly
o Concrete Operational Stage: b/w ages 7-11
Abstract thinking begins at age 7