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Socialization. How society effects human development, nature v. nurture, are we prisoners of socialization. What is Human Nature?.

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How society effects human development, nature v. nurture, are we prisoners of socialization

what is human nature
What is Human Nature?

Socialization is the process by which people learn the characteristics of their group- knowledge, skills, attitudes, values and actions appropriate for them

  • Nature and nurture effect human development
  • Societal interaction is a key to human development- shown in studies of feral and isolated children
  • Language, social contact and interaction allow humans develop in emotionally “healthy” human beings. This is known as the social environment (entire human environment including direct contact with others)
  • Language is not natural it is learned
  • The family is the primary agent of socialization
theories of human development
Theories of Human Development
  • Humans develop reasoning skills, personality, emotions, morals and a sense of self through social observation, contact and interaction.
  • Major theories- Cooley’s “looking glass self”, Mead and role taking, Piaget and stages of development, Kohlberg’s stages of development, and Carol Gilligan’ stages of development.
looking glass self and role taking
Looking Glass Self and Role Taking

Looking Glass Self (1902)

  • Each to a looking glass reflects the other that doth pass.
  • Charles Cooley- coined the term. It is the process by which a person’s sense of self develops from interactions with others.
  • 1-Imagine how we appear to those around us 2-Intrperet others reactions 3- develop self- concept
  • The self is never a finished product, it is always a process

Mead and Role Taking (1934)

  • In order to take the role of the other the person needs to put themselves in the other persons shoes
  • Not born with this ability- during childhood this is developed through play
  • Children first learn to take on the role of the significant other eventually take the role of the “generalized other”
three stages of role taking
Three Stages of Role Taking
  • Three and Under- mimic gestures and words of others
  • Three to Six- Take role of others, firefighter, superhero
  • Games- play organized games that require them to take multiple roles
i and me and the mind as a product of society
“I” and “Me” and the Mind as a Product of Society
  • Self is divided into two parts-”I” and the “Me”
  • I is the self as subject, creative, active part of self
  • Me is the self as an object
  • Mead drew the conclusion that not only the self but the human mind is a social product
  • We think using symbols.
  • Symbols come from societies, like language. If society did not provide symbols we could not think
  • The mind is a product of society
piaget and the development of reasoning 1954
Piaget and the Development of Reasoning (1954)
  • Piaget concluded that children go through four stages as they develop the ability to reason
  • 1. Sensormotor stage
  • 2. Preoperational stage
  • 3. Concrete operational stage
  • 4. Formal operational stage
piaget and the development of reason
Piaget and the Development of Reason
  • Sensormotor Stage
  • understanding limited to direct contact.
  • Can’t recognize cause and effect-
  • birth to age two
  • Preoperational Stage
  • do not understand common concepts like size and speed, do not understand numbers.
  • Can’t take the role of the other
  • Two to age seven
piaget and the development of reason9
Piaget and the Development of Reason
  • Concrete operational stage
  • Reasoning ability remains concrete
  • Children can understand causation
  • Take the role of others and participate in games
  • Need concrete examples to talk about concepts
  • Ages seven to twelve
piaget and the development of reason10
Piaget and the Development of Reason
  • Formal Operational Stage
  • Children capable of abstract thinking
  • Can talk about concepts based on general principles
  • Children know right from wrong without needing concrete examples
  • After age twelve
Lawrence Kohlberg described development of moral reasoning (what we consider right and wrong)
  • As we develop we pass through levels of moral thinking
global aspects of the self and reasoning
Global Aspects of the Self and Reasoning
  • Cooley, Mead, Kohlberg and Piaget’s ideas are universal
  • Children enter stages at different times
  • Piaget’s main idea demonstrates that a basic structure underlies the development of reasoning, children all over the world begin with the concrete and move to the abstract
  • Some people get stuck in stage four of Kohlberg’s scale. Studies show that college nurtures stage five and people without this experience have less ability for abstract thought.
  • Social experience and culture can modify these stages.
freud and the development of personality
Freud and the Development of Personality
  • Along with development of the mind is the development of the personality
  • Sigmund Freud, Austrian psychologist theory of the three elements of personality
  • The id
  • The ego
  • The superego
freud and the development of personality14
Freud and the Development of Personality
  • Id- all people are born with it. The inborn drive that leads us to seek self gratification.
  • Ego- the id is blocked by the needs of others. To adapt to these needs the ego develops. It is the balancing force between the id and societies needs to suppress it.
  • Superego- the culture within us. The norms and values we have internalized from our social groups. The moral component of our personality.
  • Freud does not take into account the fact that social class and roles in groups underlie our behavior
socialization and emotions
Socialization and Emotions
  • Emotions essential to what we become.
  • depend on socialization
  • Six universal emotions- anger, disgust, fear, happiness, sadness and surprise
  • expressed differently in different cultures
  • byproduct of culture, class and relationship
  • Childhood socialization centers on learning the norms of emotion, how to express our emotions in a variety of settings
the self and emotions as social control
The Self and Emotions as Social Control
  • Socialization is needed to turn us into conforming members of society
  • What factors influence how we act?
  • Our social mirror – the result of being socialized into a self and emotions- sets up effective controls to our behavior
socialization and gender pp 75 78
Socialization and Gender pp.75-78
  • Society uses gender socialization that set different expectations for males and females
  • By adulthood most of us act, think and feel according to cultural guidelines, what is appropriate about our sex
  • Parents are the first significant others that teach us about our roles
gender and the family
Gender and the Family
  • Studies show that boys are subconsciously rewarded for being active and independent and girls are rewarded for being passive and dependent
  • Boys and girls have different toys, play differently, boys get dirty, girls are more compliant
  • Socialization lies at the heart of male-female differences
gender messages from peers and mass media
Gender Messages from Peers and Mass Media
  • Sorting process begins with family and continues with peer groups, individuals of roughly the same age linked by common interest
  • Television, movies and video games reinforce societies expectations of our behavior
  • Television and movies can reinforce stereotypes or display stereotype breaking characters
  • Are video games changing or reinforcing stereotypes? Read Mass Media in Social Life, page 79, and answer the questions.
  • Gender serves as the primary basis for social inequality-privileges and obligations given to one group and not another- makes gender images important to understand
agents of socialization pp 78 85
Agents of Socialization pp.78-85
  • Groups that influence our orientation toward life- our self concept, emotions, attitudes and behavior- are called agents of socialization.
  • Major Agents of Socialization
  • The Family
  • The Neighborhood
  • Religion
  • Day Care
  • School and Peer Groups
  • Sports and Competitive Success
  • The Workplace
the family
The Family
  • Study of how working class families and middle class families raise their children.
  • Job type is a defining characteristic of child rearing style.
the neighborhood
The Neighborhood
  • Parents try to move to better neighborhoods

Children from low income neighborhoods are more likely to get into trouble, get pregnant, drop out of school and have a disadvantaged life.

More affluent neighborhoods people watch out for each other more because the population is more stable. This keeps children out of trouble and safe

  • Religion influences values
  • 40% of Americans attend church regularly
  • Even people who do not go to church regularly religion provides a framework for morality
  • Teaches ideas about dress, speech, manners that are appropriate for formal occasions
latent and manifest functions
Latent and Manifest Functions
  • Latent functions- unintended consequences of people’s actions
  • Manifest functions- intended beneficial consequences of people’s actions
day care
Day Care
  • A study that followed children from age infancy to kindergarten reported that children that spent more time in day care than with their mothers were more uncooperative and unaffectionate toward their mothers. This was regardless of social class or the families social status
  • A positive finding was the children scored higher on language tests regardless of income or social status. This is probably due to the social interaction with other children at day care.
school and peer groups
School and Peer Groups
  • As children enter school the influence of the parents and family lessens
  • When this occurs there is a transfer of values too those of the peer group
  • Children separate themselves by sex group
school and peer groups27
School and Peer Groups
  • School gives children a broader perspective that helps them prepare for the world beyond the family
  • Children learn universality- the same rules apply to everyone regardless of how special they may be at home
  • Corridor Curriculum-What students teach each other outside of classroom
  • Schools around the world reflect and reinforce their nation’s social, economic and political systems
school and peer groups28
Boys Norms

Athletic Ability



Academic Achievement for boys lowered their popularity

Girls Norms

Popularity based on family background

Physical appearance

The ability to attract popular boys

Academic achievement increased standing among peers

School and Peer Groups
school and peer groups29
School and Peer Groups
  • It is almost impossible to go against your peer group
  • Those who conform are “insiders”. Those that don’t are “outsiders”.
  • Standards of peer groups dominate our lives and influence our choices
sports and competitive success
Sports and Competitive Success
  • Sports teach values- “how to be a team player”
  • Boys learn to achieve in sports to gain prestige
  • Encourages boys to develop instrumental relationships- those based on what you can get out of people
  • Girls construct their identities on meaningful relationships, not competitive success
the workplace
The Workplace
  • We learn different perspectives about the world from our co-workers and workplace
  • Before we become engaged in a career we become involved in anticipatory socialization-learning to play a role before entering it. This allows us to become familiar with a role and become aware what is expected of us
  • The more we participate in a line of work the more it becomes part of your self concept, people describe themselves by their line of work
resocialization pages 85 87
Resocialization pages 85-87
  • Occurs when people learn new norms, values and attitudes to match their new situation. When new ideas become incorporated into the person, they view life as fundamentally different.
  • Examples of Resocialization
  • Divorce
  • Going to college
  • AA
total institutions
Total Institutions
  • A place where people are cut off from the rest of society and are totally controlled by the officials that run the place.
  • Examples
  • Boot Camp
  • Prison
  • Concentration Camps
total institutions34
Total Institutions
  • When a person enters a total institution they go through a degradation ceremony
  • This is an attempt to strip away the persons identity- shaved head, take away personal items, undergo examination in public, given a uniform
  • All routine is standardized, takes away individuality
  • This experience brands a person for life
life course pages 87 90
Life Course pages 87-90
  • The stages we go through in life from birth to death are the life course
  • As we pass through life it effects your behavior and orientations
  • Life course differs because of social location (corners in life people occupy because of where they are located in society)
  • Race , ethnicity, gender map out different experiences
childhood birth 12
Childhood (Birth- 12)
  • Historically childhood was not a special time
  • Industrialization changed how we view childhood
  • They began to attend school, attitudes of dependency and children needing gentle guidance to develop emotionally, intellectually and morally.
  • Today this view is taken for granted and seen as natural
  • Technology can change the nature of childhood, TV images of war, rape, murder expose children to a world that used to be hidden from them.
  • In Least Industrialized Nations childhood is still not seen as a special time
adolescence 13 17
Adolescence (13-17)
  • Not a natural division but a social division
  • Industrial Revolution brought material abundance that allowed teens to stay out of the labor force, this stage created by society not biology
  • At the same time education became important , this created a gap between childhood and adulthood
  • In industrialized nations adolescents must find their own identity- leaving the younger world and not yet in the older world
  • Adolescents develop their own clothing, attitudes, language, music- their own subculture
  • In tribal societies there are initiation rites as a person passes from childhood to adulthood
transitional adulthood 18 29
Transitional Adulthood (18-29)
  • Post industrial societies have extended adolescence, this period called transitional adulthood (adultolescence)
  • Mostly freed from control of parents, yet they do not have to support themselves
  • Young adults attend college, graduate and either establish a career or “find themselves”
  • At some point during this period people take on a full time job, get married , go into debt , etc.
the middle years 30 65
The Middle Years 30-65
  • Early Middle Years 30-49
  • People become sure of themselves and their goals in life
  • Women have trouble with the transition during this time- supermom, career, superwives
  • Pressures of too little time and too much to do
  • Many adjustments during this period
middle years
Middle Years
  • Later Middle Years 50-65
  • Health issues and morality play a role during this stage
  • Change in orientation of thinking- from birth to time left to live
  • Compare what they have accomplished with how far they hoped to go
  • Evaluation of the past and come to terms of what lies ahead
  • Many care for children and aging parents
  • Many enjoy job security and the children are grown
  • Idea of self is firmly planted and fewer upheavals are likely to occur
older years 65 and on
Older Years 65 and on
  • In modern industrial societies the older years begin after 65
  • Until the early 1900’s most people died before reaching this age, industrialization brought better public health and nutrition that prolonged life
  • Early Older Years- 65 to 80
  • Many people view this as an extension of the middle years
  • The idea of death becomes less abstract
  • People feel time closing in on them
  • Later Older Years- 80 +
  • People see others around them pass away
  • Stage is marked by growing frailty and illness
sociological significance of the life course
Sociological Significance of the Life Course
  • When you live and your social location determine your life course.
  • Being born ten years later or earlier can change the direction your life takes
  • Social Location- your gender, social class and race- is also significant. Societies events will have similar effects on people of the same social location
  • Individual factors also influence your life course. examples – marrying early, entering college late
are we prisoners of socialization
Are we Prisoners of Socialization?
  • We are not completely products of socialization- socialization does not go in and behavior comes out.
  • Socialization effects us all, but we each have a self.
  • The self is dynamic not a passive sponge, we are each actively involved in the construction of the self.
  • Some social institutions, like the family, provide us with the basic elements of our personality. We voluntarily join other social groups that have an effect on our self. People can change the self and social location along with the options available within society.