Socialization Sociology 101 A Look Ahead █ █ █ How much of a person’s personality is shaped by culture as opposed to inborn traits? In what ways does socialization continue into adulthood? Who are the most powerful agents of socialization? Socialization and the Life Course Socialization: Lifelong process in which people learn appropriate attitudes, values, and behaviors █ Personality: Person’s typical patterns of attitudes, needs, characteristics, and behavior █ The Role of Socialization Sociobiology Sociobiology is the systematic study of the biological bases of social behavior. In its extreme form, sociobiology suggests that all behavior is the result of genetic or biological factors and places little emphasis on social interaction. Behaviorism B.F. Skinner, one of the most famous behaviorists. Behaviorists see the individual as a blank slate that could be written upon through socialization Behaviorism asserts that individual behavior is not determined by instincts but rather, all behavior is learned. Instinct – an unlearned, biologically determined behavior pattern common to all members of a species. Reflex - an unlearned, biologically determined, involuntary response to some physical stimuli. Drives – unlearned, biologically determined impulses common to all members of a species that satisfy needs such as sleep, food, water, or sexual gratification. The Role of Socialization The Influence of Heredity Studies of Identical Twins Intelligence tests show similar scores when twins are reared apart in roughly similar social settings. Intelligence tests show quite different scores when twins are reared apart in dramatically different social settings. Social Environment: The Impact of Isolation Interaction of heredity and environment shape human development The Cases of Isabelle and Genie Emphasizes importance of earliest socialization experiences for children Early socialization experiences in normal environments are important. Primate Studies Harlow showed isolation had damaging effect on monkeys The Self and Socialization █ Self: Distinct identity that sets us apart from others The self is not a static phenomenon It continues to develop and change The Self and Socialization Cooley: Looking-Glass Self We learn who we are by interacting with others Looking-glass self: The self is product of social interactions with other people Cooley argued that during interaction humans serve as mirrors for one another Our view of ourselves comes from not only our contemplation of personal qualities, but also from our impressions of how others perceive us We base our perception of who we are on how we think other people see us and on whether this opinion seems good or bad to us George Herbert Mead According to Mead, in the early months of life, children do not realize that they are separate from others . Shortly after birth, infants start to notice the faces of those around them Gradually, we distinguish ourselves from our care givers and begin to perceive ourselves in contrast to them George Herbert Mead When we begin to represent ourselves in our own minds as objects distinct from everything else, our self has been formed. Mead: Stages of the Self █ Preparatory Stage: Children imitate people around them – Symbols: Gestures, objects, and words that form basis of human communication George Herbert Mead Preparatory Stage Up to about the age of 3 kids mimic social roles children imitate significant others They do not yet have a sense of self separate from others Mead: Stages of the Self from about age 3-5 █ Play Stage: Children develop skill in communicating through symbols and role taking occurs – Role taking: Process of mentally assuming perspective of another and responding from that imagined viewpoint George Herbert Mead Children learn to use language and other symbols which enable them to imitate the actions of others Learn the roles, not just significant others including parents, teachers, and schoolmates. The child at this stage is capable only of play and cannot yet engage in the organized activity George Herbert Mead 3. Game Stage begins in the early school years children understand not only their own social position but also the positions of others around them At this stage, organized play, or team games The significance for the self is that to play these games the individual must be able to take multiple roles George Herbert Mead Generalized others: Attitudes, viewpoints, and expectations of society as a whole that a child takes into account They understand the repercussions of their behavior and the effect of them on others anticipate actions of significant and generalized others Ervin Goffman: Presentation of the Self Impression Management: The individual slants the presentation of the self in order to create distinctive appearances and satisfy particular audiences Dramaturgical Approach: People resemble performers in action The goal is to create distinctive appearances and to satisfy particular audiences. Erving Goffman this altering of the presentation of the self impression management Goffman argued that roles in life like those in the theater, have both a stage and a backstage. Face-work is another aspect of the self. Maintaining the proper image can be essential to continued social interaction Psychological Approaches to the Self Freud Self is a social product, however, natural impulsive instincts in constant conflict with societal constraints Personality influenced by others (especially one’s parents) Psychological Approaches to the Self Piaget Emphasized stages that humans progress through as the self develops Cognitive theory of development identified 4 stages in development of children’s thought processes Social interaction key to development Table 4-1: Theoretical Approaches to Development of the Self Scholar Key Concepts and Contributions Major Points of Theory Charles Horton Cooley 1864-1929 sociobiologist (USA) Looking-glass self Stages of development not distinct; feelings toward ourselves developed through interaction with others George Herbert Mead 1863-1931 sociobiologist (USA) The self Generalized other Three distinct stages of development; self develops as children grasp the roles of others in their lives Erving Goffman (1922-1982) sociobiologist (USA) Impression management Self developed through the impressions Dramaturgical approach we convey to others and to groups Face-work Sigmund Freud Psychoanalysis (1856-1939) psychotherapist (Austria) Self influenced by parents and by inborn drives, such as the drive for sexual gratification Jean Piaget (1896-1980) child psychologist (Switzerland) Four stages of cognitive development; moral development linked to socialization Cognitive theory Socialization and the Life Course The Life Course - Socialization continues throughout our lives. In different cultures stages of development are marked by specific ceremonies. Rites of passage are a means of dramatizing and validating changes in a person’s status. These specific ceremonies mark stages of development in the life course. The Life Course We encounter some of the most difficult socialization challenges in later years Assessing one’s accomplishments Coping with declining physical abilities Retirement Facing the inevitability of death Table 4-2: Milestones in the Transition to Adulthood Percentage of People Who View Event as Extremely Live Event Expected Age or Quite Important Financial independence from parents/guardians 20.9 years 80.9% Separate residence from parents 21.1 57.2 Full-time employment 21.2 83.8 Completion of formal schooling 22.3 90.2 Capability of supporting a family 24.5 82.3 Marriage 25.7 33.2 Parenthood 26.2 29.0 Source: T. W. Smith 2003. Socialization and the Life Course Anticipatory Socialization and Resocialization Two types of socialization occur throughout the life course 1. 2. Anticipatory Socialization - The processes of socialization in which a person “rehearses” for future occupations and social relationships Resocialization: The process of discarding former behavior patterns and accepting new ones as part of a transition in one’s life Agents of Socialization Family Role of family in socializing a child cannot be overestimated Cultural Influences The Impact of Race and Gender Gender Roles: expectation regarding proper behavior, attitudes, and activities of males and females Agents of Socialization School Schools teach children the values and customs of the larger society. Schools have traditionally socialized children into conventional gender roles. Agents of Socialization Peer Group As children grow older, peer groups increasingly assume the role of Mead’s significant others. Peer groups can ease the transition to adult responsibilities. Peer groups can encourage children to honor or violate cultural norms and values. Peer groups can be a source of harassment as well as support. Agents of Socialization Mass Media and Technology 53 percent of all children ages 12 to 18 have their own televisions. Television permits imitation and role playing but does not encourage more complex forms of learning. Technology is socializing families into multitasking as the social norm. Figure 4-2: How Young People Use the Media Source: Rideout et al. 2005:7.