Influence of Social Factors – Formation of Identity (PSY, SOC)

by Tarry Ahuja, PhD

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    00:00 Now, what is the Influence of Social Factors on Identity Formation? Now, the influence of other individual is really, really unique.

    00:09 And I think again we can all relate to this and there's a phenomenon called this the Looking-glass self which proposes an individual’s sense of self develops from interpersonal interactions with others in society and the perception of others.

    00:22 So in English, what we are going to say is “You shape yourself." And what you feel and think about yourself, your identity is formed by those relationships with those around you.

    00:32 So who your friends? Who do you hang out with? Who do you talk to at work? All of that will shape, help shape of your identity.

    00:40 So if you hang around, interact with a lot intelligent folks that will then help identify you.

    00:47 You yourself will say, “Well, I hang out with a lot of smart people.

    00:50 I’m a collegiate. I’m at on academic.” versus “I really am into sports. I hang out with a lot of jocks.

    00:56 I play a lot of sports, we talk about sports.” that’s going to shape your identity.

    00:59 So we call that the looking-glass self.

    01:01 It develops at an early age and contributes throughout life helping shape your self-concepts.

    01:06 So as again a lot of these factors are long drawn out developmental things that happened over a period of time.

    01:11 Now, Social behaviorism suggests the mind and self-emerges through the social process of communicating with others.

    01:19 So social we know is interacting with people in our social environment engaging and behaviorism is your behavior.

    01:27 What we’re saying is your eventual identity is formed through the behaviors that you do in the social setting through the social process of communicating with others. Like I implied.

    01:36 So looking-glass self and social behaviorism are obviously linked.

    01:40 Now, let’s go through how we can actually gather some of this information.

    01:47 The influence of other individuals.

    01:49 Now, you may know as little kids, what we love to do is imitate, right.

    01:52 So imitation is when an individual observes and replicates another behavior.

    01:56 Now, this is unlimited to young children because we know as adults, we imitate what we see a lot of the time whether it’s a pop star or a role model that we are [inaudible 00:02:03,8] we will try to imitate I mean like their behaviors and their action, right.

    02:07 So this happens very early in development.

    02:09 and is considered innate by many and involve something called mirror neurons.

    02:13 What we’re saying here is that when you’re a small small baby or even you’re toddler, we know that everybody across the board, globally speaking children tend to imitate.

    02:25 And so that’s where they say, “Well, this is maybe not a learned behavior.

    02:29 This is an innate behavior meaning something that’s found from within.

    02:32 And there are this specialized neurons called mirror neurons.

    02:36 And this mirror neurons are neurons that are found that will fire when you’re either doing an action or you’re watching somebody doing an action.

    02:44 So that’s what we called mirror. They’re mirroring an activity.

    02:47 So you see somebody lifting up a glass and laughing and you do that 'cause you’re copying those mirror neurons will fire.

    02:55 You just watching that person do the same activity will have them fire.

    02:58 So they sort of believed that these mirror neurons will help reinforce or help that imitation happen because they’re watching and reinforcing the behavior.

    03:06 Infants imitate simple reflex behavior while toddlers and young children imitate roles.

    03:15 And I would add to this, that adults imitates actual personality and identity.

    03:22 You can see they start with a small steps or say it’s the simple things like you saying, “Dadadada” or saying “Look at the cute baby.” And that you’re saying this with the baby, the baby going to see that.

    03:33 and the baby going to replicate some of the words and sounds you’re making.

    03:36 If the baby sees you combing your hair and might try to do simple things like that.

    03:40 And as they get a little bit older, toddlers will start to play “Mommy” and or play “Daddy “ And they’ll see that all mom always wears heels and wears a dress and they’ll sneak in and get all your lipstick and cover their face and put on the dress and come on the heels. And their pretending to play mommy.

    03:56 Or if they’re playing you buy your child a little kitchen set and they’re cooking.

    04:01 and what are they trying to do? they try to copy mom or dad whoever is doing the cooking and they do this role behavior imitating roles.

    04:08 And so again, these all falls under imitation.

    04:13 Imitation is when we know that the desired behavior is something that the behavior is saying as the desired behavior.

    04:23 It something that they want to see and do and which is why they replicate.

    04:29 Imitation and role-taking are related but is different.

    04:35 We can imitate simple behaviors and role-taking as much more specific.

    04:38 Now we have taken on that role and with that role comes a behaviors and an identity.

    04:44 So appreciate that other’s views and roles different from their own and how our actions will affect others.

    04:51 So here all were saying, is when you have a certain viewpoint, and you have a different role that might differ from those around you, and the actions that you take will affect others, and the actions that other take will affect you.

    05:07 Again, this interactive process will shape your identity.

    05:13 Role-taking ability involves understanding the cognitive and affective aspects of that role.

    05:19 What we’re saying here, is if I’m going to play say doctor, as a youngster and I’m pretending to be a doctor you need to then as a child grasp and understand the moods, emotions and attitudes that a doctor would have.

    05:35 Otherwise, how would I know your sort of playing a doctor or a teacher.

    05:39 So we know let’s use teacher as an example, we know the teachers talk in a certain way and they’re very motherly, and they’re very calm and patient.

    05:49 And so all of a sudden if you’re pretending to be a teacher what are some of the first things you do? You say “Well, I’m going to play a teacher now.

    05:55 Hi little Timmy, how are you? Let’s read books today.” So just acting and talking in that fashion is you understanding the cognitive and affective roles that a teacher has.

    06:08 And so you’re bringing contexts, you’re bringing depth to the role.

    06:12 but in order to do the role well you need to understand all those moods, emotions and attitudes.

    06:18 Okay so let’s now take a look at the influence of groups.

    06:24 'cause we’re looking at individuals there in terms of roles and imitation.

    06:27 But what impact does the group have? So an individual have a reference group.

    06:33 This is a frame of reference for understanding.

    06:35 And there’s a different aspects that the group can bring to the table.

    06:37 There's perceptions, cognitions and ideas of self.

    06:41 These helps to guide one’s identity by identifying differences in characteristics, behavior and attitudes.

    06:46 Okay, we should know those three.

    06:48 The perceptions, cognitions and ideas of self that’s linked to characteristics differences in characteristics, behaviors and attitudes.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Influence of Social Factors – Formation of Identity (PSY, SOC) by Tarry Ahuja, PhD is from the course Self-Identity.

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Looking-glass self
    2. Self-identity
    3. Peer pressure
    4. Social identity
    5. Social behavior
    1. Imitation
    2. Social behaviorism
    3. Learning reflexes
    4. Sense memory
    5. Long-term memory
    1. Role-taking
    2. Imitation
    3. Social behaviorism
    4. Looking-glass self
    5. Reference of group
    1. Imitation
    2. Role-taking
    3. Observational learning
    4. Goal-oriented tasks
    5. Autonomy vs. shame and doubt

    Author of lecture Influence of Social Factors – Formation of Identity (PSY, SOC)

     Tarry Ahuja, PhD

    Tarry Ahuja, PhD

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