* the lifelong process of social interaction through which individuals acquire a self identity and the physical, mental, and social skills needed for survival in society
* process by which people learn the characteristics of their group: knowledge, skills, attitudes, values, norms, actions
* the essential link btw the individual and society
* process through which we become human
Why is socialization important?
* teaches us ways to think, talk and act that are necessary for social living
* ensures that members of society are socialized to support the existing social structure
* allows society to pass culture on to the next generation
Human Development ( we are a product of what two forces?)
Heredity- "nature"
Social environment- "nurture"
*determines our physical makeup (e.g.: eye color, hair color, height)
Social environment
*determines how we develop and behave
*we know that isolation and maltreatment affect our ability to behave in "normal" ways
study of social behavior from a biological perspective
Psychoanalytic perspective
Sigmund Freud's approach is that human behavior and personality originate from unconscious forces within individuals.
Sigmund Freud
*known as the founder of psychoanalytic theory
*developed his major theories in the Victorian era, when biological explanations of human behavior were prevalent
*during this era, extreme sexual repression and male dominance greatly influenced his theory and explanations
*believed that people have two basic tendencies: the urge to survive and the urge to procreate
*considered biological drives to be the primary source of human activity.
*activated by the pleasure principle to demand immediate and complete gratification of biological needs
Theory of Personality (Freud's)
according to Freud, human development occur in three states that reflect different levels of personality
* Freud's term
*basic biological drives and needs immediate gratification
*Freud's term
*rational, reality-oriented component that imposes restrictions on innate pleasure seeking
*Freud's term
*conscience, moral and ethical aspects of personality
Jean Piaget
*Swiss psychologist
*pioneer in the field of cognitive (intellectual) development
*believed that in each stage of development (from birth do adolescence), children's activities are governed by their perception of the world around them
* provided useful insights on the emergence of logical thinking as the result of biological maturation and socialization
Cognitive theorist
interested in how people obtain, process, and use information
*how we think
Cognitive Development (Piaget's)
1. sensorimotor stage (birth to age 2): children understand the world through sensory contact and immediate action
2. preoperational stage (age 2-7): children begin to use words as symbols and form mental images
3. concrete operational stage (age 7-11): children think in terms of tangible objects and events
4. formal operational stage (12 and up): adolescents begin to think about the future and evaluate different courses of action
Lawrence Kohlberg
*elaborated on Piaget's theories of cognitive reasoning by conducting a series of studies in which children, adolescents, and adults were presented with moral dilemmas that took the form of stories.
*based on the findings, he classified moral reasoning into three sequential levels: preconventional level, conventional level, and postconventional level
preconventional level
*age seven to ten
* children's perceptions based on punishment and obedience
*evil behavior is that which is likely to be punished
* good conduct is based on obedience and avoidance of unwanted consequences
conventional level
* age ten through adulthood
*people are most concerned with how they are perceived by their peers and with how one conforms to rules
postconventional level
* few adults reach this stage
*people view morality in terms of individual rights
*"moral conduct" is judged by principles based on human rights that transcend government and law
Carol Gilligan
* one of the major critics of Kohlberg's theory of moral development.
*according to Gilligan, Kohlberg's model was developed solely on the basis of research with male respondents, and women and men often have divergent views on morality based on differences in socialization and life experiences
*Argues that male respondents are more likely to use abstract standards of right and wrong
* argues that female respondents are more likely to be concerned about what consequences might have for themselves and family
Stages of Female Moral Development (Gilligan's)
Stage 1: A woman is motivated primarily by selfish concerns
Stage 2: She recognizes her responsibility to others
Stage 3: She makes a decision based on a desire to do the greatest good for self and for others
Sociological perspective
*we cannot form a sense of self or personal identity without intense social contact with others
*self represents the sum total of perceptions and feelings that an individual has of being a distinct, unique person (a sense of who and what one is)
Self-Concept (self)
*your conscious awareness of possessing a distinct identity that separates you and your environment from other members of society
*is the totality of our beliefs and feelings about ourselves
* when we speak of the "self", we typically use words such as: I, me, my, mine and myself
* not present at birth: it arises in the process of social experience
Self-concept (components)
1. the physical self (I am tall)
2. the active self (I am good at soccer)
3. the social self (I am nice to others
4. the psychological self (I believe in world peace)
our perception about what kind of person we are
Charles Cooley
*Sociologist that believed self-esteem to be very important
* Looking Glass Self Theory
Looking-Glass Self
* refers to the way in which a persons sense of self is derived from the perceptions of others
1. we imagine how we look to others
2. we imagine how other people judge the appearance that we think we present
* if we think the evaluation is favorable our self-concept is enhanced
* if we think the evaluation is unfavorable, our self-concept is diminished
looking-glass self (three-step process)
* is a self-concept derived from this three step process:
1. we imagine how our personality and appearance will look to others
2. we imagine how other people judge the appearance and personality that we think we present
3. we develop a self-concept. if we think the evaluation of others is favorable, our self-concept is enhanced. if we think the evaluation is unfavorable, our self-concept is diminished
George Herbert Mead
*sociologist that originated the field of social psychology
*known for his evolutionary social theory of the genesis mind and self
*extended Cooley's insight by linking the idea of self-concept to role-taking
* divided the self into the "I" and the "me". the "I" represents the spontaneous and unique traits of each person. the "me" is the objective elements of the self, which is composed of the internalized attitudes and demands of other members of society and the individuals awareness of those demands
*both the "I" and the "me" are needed to form the social self
*the "I" develops first, and the "me" takes form during the three stages of self-development.
* the process by which a person mentally assumes the role of another person or group in order to understand the world from that persons or groups point of view
* the process of mentally assuming the perspective of another, theerby enabling one to respond from that imagined viewpoint
significant others
are those persons who care, affection, and approval are especially desired and who are most important in the development of the self
3-Stages of self-development (Mead)
self develops in three stages:
1. preparatory stage: (about age 3) children imitate others, interactions lack meaning; preparing for role-taking
2. play stage: (about 3-5) children pretend to take the roles of specific people; learn to use language and other symbols; see themselves in relation to others; do not view role-taking as a "have to do"
3. game stage: (begins early school years) children become aware of the "rules of the game" and the expectations of others; understand their own social position and others around them
generalized others
Mead's concept refers to the child's awareness of the demands and expectations of the society as a whole or of the child's subculture
Social Psychological Theories of Human Development
1. Freud's psychoanalytic perspective- children first develop the id (drives and needs), then the ego (restrictions on the id), and then superego (moral and ethical aspects of personality)
2. Piaget's cognitive development- children go through four stages of cognitive (intellectual) development, going from understanding only through sensory contact to engaging in highly abstract thought
3. Kohlberg's stages of moral development- people go through three stages of moral development, from avoidance of unwanted consequences to viewing morality based on human rights
4. Gilligan: gender and moral development- women go through stages of moral development from personal wants to the greatest good for themselves and others
Sociological Theories of Human Development
1. Cooley's looking-glass self- a person;s sense of self is derived from his or her perception of how others view him or her
2. Mead's three stages of self-development- preparatory stage (children imitate others around them); play stage (children role play specific people); game stage (children learn the demand and expectations of roles)
agents of socialization
* are the persons, groups, or institutions that teach us what we need to know in order to participate in society; which sociolization can occure
Such as: family, school, peer group, mass media
Family (agents of socialization)
* most important in all societies
* theorists using a functionalist perspective emphasize that families serve important functions in society b/c they are the primary locus for the procreation and socialization of children
*most of us form an emerging sense of self and acquire most of our beliefs and values within the family context
School (agent of socialization)
* plays an enormous role in socialization due to the expanded amount of time children spend in edu settings.
* schools teach specific knowledge and skills, but also have a profound effect on children's self-image, beliefs, and values
School- Functionalist Perspective (agent of socialization)
Functionalist Perspective- schools are responsible for:
(1) socialization, or teaching students to be productive members of society;
(2) transmission of culture;
(3) social control and personal development; and
(4) the selection, training, and placement of individuals on different rungs in the society
School- Conflict Perspective (agent of socialization)
Conflict Perspective:
*students have different experiences in the school system depending on their social class, their racial-ethnic background, the neighborhood in which they live, their gender, etc.
*children learn to be neat, punctual, quiet, wait their turn, and remain attentive to their work
*schools socialize children for later roles in the work force
Peer Groups (agent of socialization)
is a group of people who are linked by common interest, equal social position, and (usually) similar age
*often composed of classmates in day care, preschool, and elementary
*function as agents of socialization by contributing to our sense of "belonging" and our feelings of self worth
*provide children and adolescents with some degree of freedom
Mass Media (agents of socialization)
composed of large-scale organizations that use print or electronic means (such as radio, tv, film and the Internet) to communicate with large numbers of people
* media also includes the many forms of web-based and mobile technologies that we refer to as social media (such as facebook, twitter, youtube)
gender socialization
contains specific messages and practices concerning the nature of being female or male in a specific group
* primary agent is the family
* more complex when we look at relationship b/w gender socialization and social class
* family, schools, peer groups and the media also contribute
racial socialization
contains specific messages and practices concerning the nature of one's racial or ethnic status
*relates to our identity, interpersonal relationships, and location in the social hierarchy
*includes direct statements regarding race, modeling behavior (wherein a child imitates the behavior of a parent or caregiver), and indirect activities such as exposure to an environment that conveys a specific message about racial or ethnic group (EX: we are better than they are)
anticipatory socialization
process by which knowledge and skills are learned for future roles
social devaluation
wherein a person or group is considered to have less social value than other persons or groups
prejudice and discrimination against people on the basis of age, particularly against older persons
process of learning a new and different set of attitudes, values, and behaviors from those in one's background and previous experience
*voluntary: we assume a new status (student, employee, or retiree)
*involuntary: occurs against a persons wishes and generally takes place within total institution (military boot camps, jails, prison)
total institution
a place where people are isolated from the rest of society for a set period of time and come under the control of the officials who run the institution
Socialization is essential for:
*individuals survival and for human development
*the survival and stability of society
*society to learn how to reproduce itself