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Soc 201, Chapter 3 Notes

by: Tessa Peak

Soc 201, Chapter 3 Notes Soc 201

Tessa Peak
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About this Document

These notes cover Chapter 3 in the textbook, which will be on an upcoming exam.
Introduction to Sociology
Dr. McHellen
Class Notes
sociology, Introduction to Sociology, socialization, agents of socialization, nature vs nurture, Human Development, cognitive, jean piaget, Media and Society, resocialization




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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Tessa Peak on Monday September 26, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Soc 201 at Northern Virginia Community College taught by Dr. McHellen in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 89 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Sociology in Sociology at Northern Virginia Community College.


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Date Created: 09/26/16
Introduction to Sociology Notes­ Ch. 3: Socialization: From Infancy to Old Age I. Social Experience: The Key to Our Humanity ­Socialization: the lifelong social experience by which people develop their human  potential and learn culture ­Personality: A person’s fairly consistent patterns of acting, thinking, and feeling A. Human Development: Nature and Nurture a. The Biological Sciences: The Role of Nature i. Darwin’s study of evolution led people to think that human behavior  was instinctive­ our “nature” ii. Led to misunderstanding when trying to understand cultural diversity b. The Social Sciences: The Role of Nurture i. John B. Watson developed a theory called behaviorism­ behavior is  not instinctive but learned ii. Human behavior is essentially rooted in nurture, not nature (human  equal, differing only in cultural patterns) iii. Nurture matters more in shaping human behavior  B. Social Isolation ­Being cut off from the social world is harmful to human beings a. Research with Monkeys i. Harry and Margaret Harlow experimented with rhesus monkeys,  placing them in various conditions of social isolation. ii. Complete isolation, even with proper nutrition, had a serious impact on the monkey’s development, being anxious and fearful. iii. When placed with an artificial wire “mother”, supplied with milk  where the nipple would be, survived but also could not interact with  other monkeys. iv. When isolated with an artificial mesh “mother”, did much better being  able to cling and cuddle with the mother, and showed less damage in  social settings.  v. Confirmed importance for adults to cradle infants affectionately. vi. By about six months, isolation and irreversible emotional and  behavioral damage.  b. Studies of Isolated Children i. Anna i. Five­year­old girl found by a social worker in a storage room,  wedged into an old chair and tied with her arms above her head so she couldn’t move.  ii. Forced to live isolated because of a strict grandfather who did not  approve of his daughter’s child; she was only given enough milk  to keep her alive.  iii. After a year, she was able to interact with others, walk, and feed  herself, but permanent damage was caused.  Mental development  was extremely stunted and she died at age 10 due to a blood  disorder. ii. Isabelle i. Six years of virtual isolation, displayed same lack of  responsiveness as Anna, but was put into an intensive learning  program directed by psychologists.  Within a year and a half, had  a 2000­word vocabulary, and by 14, attending sixth­grade classes. ii.  Intensive effort had pushed Isabelle through six years of normal  development. II. Understanding Socialization A. Sigmund Freud’s Elements of Personality a. Basic Human Needs i. Biology plays a major part in human development.  ii. Two basic needs present at birth: a need for sexual and emotional  bonding (life instinct) and an aggressive drive (death instinct). Two  forces create deep inner tension. b. Freud’s Model of Personality i. Three parts to model: id, ego, superego.  ii. Id:  the human being’s basic drives (unconscious, demand immediate  satisfaction). iii. Ego: A person’s conscious efforts to balance innate pleasure­seeking  drives with the demands of society (approaching the world  realistically). iv. Superego: The cultural values and norms internalized by an individual (our conscience).  c. Personality Development i. Id and superego in conflict, managed by ego. If conflicts not resolved  in childhood, shows up in personality disorder as adult. ii. Superego culture represses selfish demands.  Sublimation redirects  selfish drives into socially acceptable behavior.  B. Jean Piaget’s Theory of Cognitive Development ­Human cognition=how people think and understand. Four stages of cognitive  development. a. The Sensorimotor Stage i. First two years of life; The level of human development at which  individuals experience the world only through their senses.  b. The Preoperational Stage i. Ages 2­6; The level of human development at which individuals first  use language and other symbols.  Lack abstract concepts. c. The Concrete Operational Stage i. Ages 7­11; the level of human development at which individuals first  see causal connections in their surroundings.  Focus on how and why.  d. The Formal Operational Stage i. Ages 12+; the level of human development at which individuals think  abstractly and critically.  Think outside concrete situations. C. George Herbert Mead’s Theory of the Social Self a. The Self i. Self: the part of an in individual’s personality composed of self­ awareness and self­image.  ii. Five points:  The self is not there at birth; it develops.  The self  develops only with social experience.  Social experience is the  exchange of symbols.  Seeking meaning leads people to imagine other  people’s intentions.  Understanding intention requires imagining the  situation from the other’s point of view.   b. The Looking­Glass Self i. Termed by Charles Horton Cooley; As we interact with others, the  people around us become a mirror in which we see ourselves.   ii. Looking­glass self: Cooley’s term for a self­image based on how we  think others see us.  c. The I and the Me i. Mead’s sixth point: By taking the role of the other, we become self­ aware. ii. Self has two parts­ The subject, which is active and spontaneous (I).   The object and the way we imagine others see us; more objective  (Me).  d. Development of the Self  i. Key to developing the self is learning to take the role of the other;  infants do this through imitation (no self yet).  Children’s self emerges  through play, modeled on significant others. ii. Significant others: people, such as parents, who have special  importance for socialization. iii. Simple play moves to complex games, involving engagement with  others.  Final stage includes seeing ourselves in terms of cultural  norms as any member of society might. iv. Generalized other: widespread cultural norms and values we use as  references in evaluating ourselves.  III. Agents of Socialization A. The Family a. Nurture in Early Childhood i. Infants totally dependent on others for care; responsibility for  providing safe and caring environment falls on others.  b. Race and Class i. Parents give a social identity to children, which partly involves race  (difficult because society defines race in various ways.   ii. Social class also plays a large part in shaping a child’s personality.  iii. People of lower social standing usually have limited education.  Well­ off parents often demand independence. Attempt to build cultural  capital, creating a sense of confidence that they will succeed later. c. The School i. Enlarges children’s social world to include people with different  backgrounds, helping to understand the importance of race and social  position.  d. Gender i. Schools and families work together in socializing children into gender  roles.  Boys and girls often participate in different activities that are  common of their gender. e. What Children Learn i. Schools informally teach many things, known as hidden curriculum.   ii. Learn cooperation, competition and better develop skills. B. The Peer Group ­Peer Group: a social group whose members have interests, social position, and age  in common; learn how to form relationships on own ­Anticipatory socialization: Learning that helps a person achieve a desired position.  C. The Mass Media ­The mass media: The means for delivering impersonal communications to a vast  audience. ­Influence likely to differ from family, school, and peer group. a. The Extent of Mass Media Exposure i. Extensive television viewing takes time away from exercise and  interaction with parents and peers. b. Television and Politics i. Majority of people focus on media sources that provide news and  analysis that agree with personal opinions. c. Television and Violence i. High public concern about violence in mass media in relation to  children ii. Correlation between amount of time spent watching TV/playing video  games and aggressive behavior. iii. TV can also enrich lives with entertaining and educational  programming, as well as increase exposure to diverse cultures.  IV. Socialization and the Life Course A. Childhood ­About 215 million of the world’s children work; half in Asia, ¼ in Africa, earning  very little. ­Some people worry when children seem to be growing up too fast: “hurried  childhood” syndrome B. Adolescence ­Buffer between childhood and adulthood; teenage years.   C. Adulthood a. Early Adulthood i. Until about age 40; managing day to day affairs b.   Middle Adulthood  ii. Ages 40~65; Life circumstances pretty well set, physical decline.  D. Old Age ­Later years of adulthood and final stage of life ­Gerontology: The study of aging and the elderly a.    Aging and Biology b. Aging and Culture i. Gerontocracy: A form of social organization in which the elderly  have the most wealth, power and prestige ii. Industrialization lessens the social standing of the elderly iii. Ageism: prejudice and discrimination against older people c. Aging and Income E. Death and Dying ­ Death is an orderly transition involving five distinct stages: denial, anger,  negotiation, resignation, acceptance.  F. The Life Course: Patterns and Variations ­Two major conclusions: Life course is largely a social construction, and, in any  society, the stages of the life course present certain problems and transitions that  involve learning something new and unlearning familiar routines.  ­Cohort: category of people with something in common, usually their age.         V.      Resocialization:  Total Institutions ­ Total institution: a setting in which people are isolated from the rest of society  and manipulated by an administrative staff ­ Three important characteristics according to Goffman: Staff members supervise  all aspects of daily life, including when and where residents eat, sleep, and work.   Life in a total institution controlled and standardized, with the same food,  uniforms, and activities for everyone.  Formal rules dictate when, where, and how inmates perform their daily routines.  ­ Resocialization: Radically changing an inmate’s personality by carefully  controlling the environment.  ­Two­part process: Staff breaks down inmate’s existing identity.  Staff tries to  build a new self in the inmate through a system of rewards and punishments.  Living in a rigidly controlled environment can leave some people  institutionalized, without the capacity for independent living.  


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