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Social Sci LibreTexts

12.5: Cultural Identity

  • Page ID
    17523
  • Learning Objectives

    At the end of the module, students will be able to:

    1. explain the influence of culture on social and self-identity
    2. discuss how personal, cultural, and universal identities shape perceptions
    3. illustrate the relationship between self and social labels on status
    4. assess the impact of technological advances and innovation on identity

    Trying to figure out who you are, what you value and believe, and why you think the way you do is a lifelong process. In the first chapter of Thinking Well, Stewart E. Kelly suggests, “we all have lenses through which we view reality, and we need to know what our individual lens is composed of and how it influences our perception of reality.” Take a moment to reflect and hypothetically paint a picture of yourself with words. Try to capture the core of your being by describing who you are. Once you have formulated a description of yourself, evaluate what you wrote. Does your description focus on your personal characteristics or your cultural characteristics you learned from other people in your life (i.e., family, friends, congregation, teachers, community, etc.)?

    • Cultural Identity (Summary)
    • Geographic Region
      People identify with the geographic location they live in as a part of who they are and what they believe. Places have subcultures specific to their geographic location, environmental surroundings, and population.
    • Identitiy Formation
      At the end of the module students will be able to explain the influence of culture on social and self-identity. They will also be able to discuss how personal, cultural, and universal identities shape perceptions. This chapter illustrate the relationship between self and social labels on status. Overall, it assess the impact of technological advances and innovation on identity
    • Identity Labels and Categories
      Identity shapes our perceptions and the way we categorize people. Our individual and collective views influence our thinking. Regardless of personal, cultural, or universal identity people naturally focus on traits, values, behaviors, and practices or behaviors they identify with and have a tendency to dismiss those they do not.
    • Race and Ethnicity
      Race is truly an arbitrary label that has become part of society’s culture with no justifiable evidence to support differences in physical appearance substantiate the idea that there are a variety of human species. Ethnicity refers to the cultural characteristics related to ancestry and heritage. Ethnicity describes shared culture such as group practices, values, and beliefs.
    • Social Class
      Social class serves as a marker or indication of resources. These markers are noticeable in the behaviors, customs, and norms of each stratified group. A person’s socio-economic status influences her or his personal and social identity. In society, we rank individuals on their wealth, power, and prestige.

    Thumbnail: Major Alan G. Rogers holding hands with his partner on the left at a same-sex wedding ceremony on June 28, 2006 (Public Domain; Stagedoorjohnny)

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