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Copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 17 PART XVIII Section 3. Identity Conflicts Across Gender, Body Type, Race, Stage Interact with Societal Structures.

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Presentation on theme: "Copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 17 PART XVIII Section 3. Identity Conflicts Across Gender, Body Type, Race, Stage Interact with Societal Structures."— Presentation transcript:

1 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 17 PART XVIII Section 3. Identity Conflicts Across Gender, Body Type, Race, Stage Interact with Societal Structures

2 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 18 The Unique Combinations of Gender and Physical Body Structure Interact With Cultural Stereotypes to Shape Identities and Produce Positive and Negative Public Reactions and Private Feelings Resulting Unique Identities Each gender has a wide range of body characteristics. Each gender, in combination with gender ideal body characteristics, also has cultural stereotypes for the expected personality characteristics and stereotypes for identity. Adherence to and Departure from the stereotype and ideal conception for each gender leads to social approval or disapproval. Social approval or disapproval leads to huge effects on degrees of self esteem and feeling of self worth.

3 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 19 Gender, Body Characteristics, and the Formation of Identity Conformity and Departure from Stereotypes Has Powerful Effects on the Formation of Identity Large, Muscular Male Frail, Delicate Female Husky, Strong Female Frail, Delicate Male Butch Lady Feminine Tough Guy Identity Large Muscular  Male Large Muscular Frail Delicate Body Characteristics  Female  Female  Male Gender Identity Stereotyping  Approved, praised, admiredHigh Self Esteem  Disapproved, shamed, ridiculedLow Self Esteem  Departure from norm for gender Low Self Esteem and body type results in confusion in Identity, affiliation, and sense of belonging

4 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 20 Racial and Ethnic Association Influence Identity Horizontally and Vertically. Socio-economic Status and Residential Location Influence Identity on One Vertical Dimension. Any person who is perceiving and assessing any other person does so in terms of [among other things] the racial or ethnic group they appear to belong to. This assessment includes assumptions that result in assigning the other person to one of the racial or ethnic groups with which they are familiar. Racial and ethnic groups entail association with territory and borders. They also entail valuation. Each racial or ethnic group within a person’s categories for race and ethnicity is imbued with a typically vague value ranking – some are better or higher and some are worse or lower in some sense. Socio-economic status can cut across race and ethnicity. Place of residence within each territorially defined racial or ethnic group and across territories is used to assign a socio-economic ranking – richer to poorer. Racial and ethnic association and socio-economic status, therefore, interact in a complex way when assigning identity to a person or when a person is adopting the identity norm. Borders circumscribing racial and ethnic groups and socio-economic groups are not anchored to their respective physical territories but are mobile, carried with each person. There are unspoken rules concerning crossing and permitting crossing borders and these rules contribute to consensual assignment and adoption of identities.

5 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 21 The Effects of Racial and Ethnic Affiliation, Residence, and Socio-Economic Status on the Formation of Identity Identity Border ETHNIC OR STATUS IDENTITY IDENTITY Perception by others of person A as belonging in an ethnic, racial, or status group, as a result of such factors as place of residence, appearance of degrees of wealth or poverty, skin color, primary language, etc., tends to involve including in person A’s identity the range of other characteristics they associate with that status, ethnic, or racial group as a whole.

6 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 22 Level of Social Status, Ethnic, and Racial Identity Engender Different Types of Psychological Changes and Inner Experiences With Respect To Affiliating with Persons of Other Status Levels or Ethnic or Racial Identity Identity Border ETHNIC OR STATUS IDENTITY IDENTITY Appearing to be friends with or affiliated with people with different identities, to most people, means they seem to take on their ‘aura’, how the different IDENTITY fits into a ‘World Schema’, and will, therefore, be perceived by the anonymous ‘THEY’ as assuming some aspects of the ‘different’ identity. When moving into association with a person of any racial, ethnic, or status identity different from one’s own, the critical question becomes: “How do I protect, maintain, or enhance my own identity?”

7 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 23 The Interaction of Identity Features With Life Stages, Grades, and Ages There are roles that features of identity such as gender, body characteristics, race or ethnicity, or socio-economic status play in defining a person’s current identity within different ages, stages, and grades in a person’s life. Each category of features has a period of life during which it becomes more prominent in redefining and assigning or adopting identity characteristics. Persons’ going through such stages and persons’ witnessing passage through, out of, and into stages anticipate and converse about stage typical behavior and identity. These discussions influence the struggle to shed and adopt the respective behaviors and identities.

8 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 24 Early Fluidity In The Formation Of Identity School Structures Involve Transitions Through Levels That Influence and Shape Identity Identity Crises When Transitioning Through School Grades Kindergarten Elementary Junior High College or Work Oh my gosh, what are they going to think of me when I enter the next level? How should I present myself? How should I handle this next challenge?

9 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 25 Differing Characteristics of Stages Transitioned From and Stages Transitioned to From home to kindergarten. Adventuring into elementary school. Adventuring into junior high school. Adventuring into high school. Adventuring into college. Adventuring into an occupation. Adventuring into marriage and parenthood. From living with a few people, mostly parents and adults. Child typically is the exclusive focus, whether positive or negative. Moves into setting with many people own age and adults who focus on group. Identity changes from being one to one among many, from one having prerogatives to loss of privileged status and restricted to limited and regulated resources and time. From a patronizing to a demanding regimen, from physical to mental and from mobile to sedentary activities and addition of continuous evaluating and grading of performance. From moderate peer comparison and feedback to increased peer critiquing and formation of alliances. From limited unsupervised activity to increased unsupervised mobility. From few formal roles to increases options or required formal roles. From few choices of studies and use of time to many choices and self determination of out of school use of time. Addition of increased homework as demands or requirements delegated for fulfillment on one’s own. Absence of supervision. Dramatically increased freedom of choice with long term consequences. Increased and completely unstructured time. Increased homework with fulfillment left completely to self determination. Increased self reliance for finances and self care. Decreased feedback from peers or adults. Completely unstructured choices for occupation followed by re-entering highly structured time, choices, and demands. Constant feedback. Total freedom and self reliance for financial management and self care on limited off time. Expansion to others relying on one for financial survival and personal care. Increased feedback. Nearly complete loss of free time. Increased negative consequences for inadequate performance. See slides # 2 and # 5

10 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 26 Wanting to be an adult and appear to have all of their Freedom of choice [especially vices] and movement. Wanting to appear to have the key possessions of an adult. Wanting to appear to have adult knowledge and wisdom. Resenting having to assume adult cares and responsibilities. Being anxious about the uncertainties involved in future choices needed to become an adult. Being afraid of not being able to cope or survive dangers. Ridiculing childishness in peers and adults. Shaming and teasing peers into exceeding their limits and feigning adult freedoms and prerogatives. Associating with older peers and/or young adults. Wanting to remain a child and play and be carefree. Wanting to be taken care of and have no responsibilities. Being ashamed of showing any signs of childhood. Being afraid of seeming naive and not having adult skills. Forgetting one’s childhood. Ridiculing childishness in people younger. Avoiding the company of younger people. ADOLESCENCE FEARS OF NOT LOOKING GROWN UP ADOLESCENTS Ages 12 through 18 The horrible in-between period and its affects on looking backward and forward with ambivalence and increasing tendencies for exaggerated, paradoxical behavior. FEARS OF TRANSITION TO ADULTHOOD DREAMS OF ADULTHOOD DREAMS OF CHILDHOOD Identity During this Transitional Period is in Constant Turmoil Adolescence: The Transition From Past To Future

11 copyright, edyoung, PhD, 3-1999 27 Physical, Physiological, and Societal Landmarks for Identity Changes –Transitions across societal structures that parallel physical and physiological features of the growing child work together to produce regularly occurring identity changes. –Each transition presents its own typical identity crisis, yet due to the complex combination of physical features, each transition presents a unique challenge to each individual. Gender and race are relatively static factors that contribute to identity. Gender and body type interact to produce dynamic influences on identity. Body type changes somewhat with age and can affect changes in identity. Changing size with increasing age combined with physiological and mental age are dynamic factors contributing to identity. Societal structures are designed to adapt to these external, bodily, identity markers. These societal markers themselves become factors influencing changes in identity. Click to return to Home


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