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The Individual in Society

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1 The Individual in Society
Section 1 Pages

2 Personality What comes to mind when you hear the term personality?
* No two individuals have exactly the same personality. Each individual has his or her own way of interacting with other people and with his or her social environment.

3 Personality Personality is defined as the sum total of behaviors, attitudes, beliefs, and values that are characteristic of an individual. This refers to more than an individual’s most striking characteristic. Our personality traits determine how we adjust to our environment and how we react in specific situations. People’s personalities continue to develop throughout their lifetime.

4 What determines personality and social behavior?
Nature vs. Nurture Heredity: the transmission of genetic characteristics from parents to children Also known as inherited genetic characteristics Can you give 3 examples of characteristics that you inherited from your parents? The suggestion that the social environment – contact with other people – determines personality. Also known as environmental and social learning Name three things in the environment that can influence your personality.

5 Instinct Instinct Is an unchanging, biological, inherited behavior pattern. Instinct is often applied to animal behavior Russian scientist Ivan Pavlov John B. Watson applied this theory to humans He claimed he could take a group of healthy infants and make them anything he wanted: doctors, lawyers, beggars, artists, athletes, etc.

6 Sociobiology The systematic study of the biological basis of all social behavior. The nature argument gained momentum with the introduction of sociobiology in the 1970s. However few sociologists accept the socio-biologists arguments. Varied cultural characteristics and behavioral traits like religion, cooperation, competition, slavery, territoriality, and envy are rooted in the genetic makeup of humans. In other words, most of human social life is determined by biological factors.

7 On the other hand… Most social scientists assume that personality and social behavior result from a blending of heredity and social environment. They believe environmental factors have the most influence. Heredity, birth order, parents, and the cultural environment are the principle factors in determining personality and behavior.

8 Heredity Everyone has certain characteristics that are present at birth. Body build, hair type, eye color, and skin pigmentation. These include certain aptitudes. Aptitudes: is a capacity to learn a particular skill or acquire a particular body of knowledge. Some can be learned, others are born with these. Examples include; natural talent for music or art.

9 Aptitude If a child shows a verbal aptitude, parents often respond by praising his or her ability, or spend extra time reading with the child. These actions tend to encourage the development of the child’s innate talent. Positive or negative parental reinforcement may also affect the development of such personality traits as shyness, sociability, and aggression.

10 Biological Drives Like animals, humans have certain needs like the hunger drive makes you want to eat. The hunger drive does not tell you when eat, what to eat or how to eat. You learn these things from the environment around you. Therefore heredity provides the hunger drive but culture determines how you meet those needs.

11 Birth Order Our personalities are also influenced by whether we have brothers or sisters. Children with siblings have a different view of the world then children who do not. The order in which we are born into also influences personalities. Research shows: Those born first are more likely to be achievement oriented and responsible. Second and middle born children tend to be better in social relationships and to be more affectionate and friendly. Later born in contrast, are often risk takers and social or intellectual rebels.

12 Parental Characteristics
Personality development in children can be influenced by the characteristics of their parents. The age of parents can have a bearing on a child’s personality. Parents in their 20’s relate differently then parents who are in the their mid 30’s or 40’s. Some parental characteristics that can influence a child’s personality are Level of education Religion Economic Status Heritage Occupational background

13 The Cultural Environment
Culture has a strong influence on personality development. Each culture gives rise to a series of personality traits – model personalities – that are typical of members in that society. In the U.S. Competitiveness, assertiveness, and individualism are common traits. What other cultures besides the country you live in influence your personality development?

14 Isolation in Childhood
Research on your laptops each of the following feral children Anna Genie Isabella Write 1 paragraphs describing what factors might have led to the different levels of success in efforts to teach Anna, Isabella, and Genie to function normally in sociology Consider: The amount of human contact each child had & The age at which each child was found

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