Socialization and Social Interaction .docx

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Political Science
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Christian O.Caron

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Sociology Reading Notes October 2 2013 What Is Socialization? -It is a process of social interaction -It is the vital link between individuals and society -A common language that allows us to communicate with others- knowledge about norms, laws, attitudes, beliefs and values -To interact with others we need a self; sense of individual identity that allows us to understand who we are in relation to others and to differentiate ourselves from them -Primary Socialization is the learning process that occurs during our childhood and initiates our entry into society (it is important to becoming who we are and what we are) -Secondary Socialization occurs after people have already undergone primary socialization (learning to be a student, making new friends, joining new clubs etc) Nature and Nurture -Nature is the Biological Inheritance where as nurture is the social environment Sigmund Freud -Proposed one of the first social scientific interpretations of the process which the self emerges -He stated that children demand immediate gratification but begin to form a self-image when their demands are denied -Example: When parents decide not to feed/comfort their child every time they wake up in the middle of the night -The child will learn to eat more before bed, sleep for longer periods and go back to sleep if they wake up -Because of many lessons of self-control, the child develops a sense of what is appropriate behavior and a moral sense of right and wrong -Freud argues that only social interaction allows the self to emerge Charles Horton Cooley -Introduced the idea of the looking glass self: suggests that the gestures and reactions of others are a mirror in which we see ourselves -Our feelings about who we are and what we are- socially organized around our evaluation of how we believe ourselves to be judged by others -The first images of the self are received from significant others- who are those closest to children during the early stages of their lives -What is important is the role played by an individuals primary group- which is the small group around us in which interaction is characterized by face-to-face association and cooperation George Herbert Mead -Believes that society is essential to human development -The key to socialization is the ability to taking on the role of the other which involves anticipating how others will see and react to you 3 Stages in Taking on the Role of the Other Imitative Stage- children younger than 2 have no real conception of themselves as separate social beings -When they play they act out certain behaviors associated with certain roles (mother, father, dancer etc.) they are only mimicking or imitating, not true role-playing Play Stage- Children begin t adopt the roles of significant others (parent, sports celebrity etc.) and their play shifts from imitative to imaginative -They learn to imagine how people will respond without actually having to act out the situation- they are playing the social roles of life Game Stage- Children develop a generalized impression of the behavior people expect and awareness of their own importance to the group -Example: In a game of Baseball, a player must continually adjust behavior to the needs of the team as a whole and to the specific situations that arise in the game -Mead says, children are responding to the generalized other- a conception of how people in general will respond -Taking the role of the generalized other means that we respond to our idea of the organized group of which we are apart in -In any given situation we observe the conduct and reactions of other people, anticipate what is expected of us and then plan, rehearse, modify and perfect our own behavior accordingly The “I” and the “Me” -Subjective part of the self is the “I” -Objective part of the self is the “me” -The “I” acts and the “me” reflects on our actions through the lens of social norms, values and expectations -The self is; 1) Spontaneous (I) 2) Conformist (Me) 3) Active (I) 4) Reflective (Me) 5) Experience (I) 6) Experienced (Me) -The 2 aspects of our selves engage in an “internal conversation” -Which means that our sense of self continues to develop as we encounter new contexts and contracts Paul Willis -Pays attention to the variations in the social contexts within which teens and young adults forge, maintain and transform their identities -Different institutions that people belong in provide them with distinct symbolic resources that influence how they can express themselves and how others see them -The character of your socialization depends on the groups and institutions which your belong in and your statuses which those groups- that is the culturally and socially defined positions you occupy in your social interactions Gender Socialization -Is the process through which individuals learn to become feminine and masculine according to expectations current in their society -Parents are usually the first source of children‟s gender learning and indications are that parents hold and communicate different expectations for males and females -Stereotyping contributes to the streaming of males and females into their traditional “male” and “female” jobs -The study of gender shows us that children and adults are socialized to respond to their social world by developing certain potentials -Gender is acquired through interactions with parents, teachers and peers as these unfold within the larger context of a society‟s cultural organization Adolescence And Youth -Socialization during adolescence requires that we find some balance between autonomy and conformity, freedom and constraint -Adolescence is generally associated with emotional and social turmoil -Young people experience rules imposed by parents who are unwilling to compromise- in turn, parents seek to monitor the adolescent‟s behavior (this situation causes resentment among adolescents, and parent-teenager relationship lacks open communication) -Peer influence promotes youthful autonomy -Adolescence is also a period of anticipatory socialization- process by which aspirants to a particular social role begin to discern what it will be like to function in that position -Example: the individual is “rehearsing” for future positions, social relationships or occupations- Adult Socialization -Process by which adults take on new statuses and acquire new and different social identities -Adolescents seek to achieve autonomy, where as adults generally have control over the content and direction of their socialization Socialization Among Older Adults -The mass media tends to present seniors as dependent or helpless -Such portrayals reinforce ageism, or discriminatory practices based on age -Ageists emphasize the declining abilities of older adults rather than their talents -Socialization in old age involves facing death and dying Agents of Socialization -individuals, groups, and institutions that impart the range of information we require to interact effectively and participate in society -They influence how individuals perceive and respond to the people and the world around them Families -Is a small group where members enjoy face-to-face contact -The family is not always an effective agent of socialization- some parents are a negative role model -Some parents neglect, abuse, or even abandon their children Families and Social Class -Middle-class parents tend to raise their children differently from the way working-class parents do -Middle-class parents are likely to instill their children the desire to think independently and become high achievers, encouraging and initiative -Working-class and poor families are more likely to stress the need for obedience an authority -Children in poor and low-income families are socialized to believe that big educational and occupational ambitions are unrealistic due to the families economic situation -The cultures of ethnic groups can and do shape socialization experiences Schools -Hidden Curriculum: The informal teaching that helps ensure students integrate into society Peer Groups: compromises individuals who are usually of the same age and enjoy approximately equal status -In childhood, peer groups are formed largely by the accident of association -Later in life we choose peer groups based on such criteria as common interests and activities, and similar income level or occupation -The peer group is the only agent of socialization in the childhood and youth that is not controlled mainly by adults -Peer groups allow young people to examine feelings, beliefs and ideas that are unacceptable to the family -Adolescent risk-taking may have multiple effects during adolescent development -It may generate a sense of individuality and self through opposition to others or established authority Mass Media and New Communications Technology -Permits imitation and role-playing -Some Socialization takes place in so-called people-processing i
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