Questions, Reading 4, Hall

Questions, Reading 4, Hall - identities be not what we...

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Alea Roach 10-4-04 TA Stephanie Farrar Discussion Questions on “The Question of Cultural Identity” by Stuart Hall 1) On page 55, Hall states, “Identity arises, not so much from the fullness of identity which is already inside us as individuals, but from the lack of wholeness which is ‘filled’ from outside us , by the ways we imagine ourselves to be seen by others .” If we formulate our identities from how we believe others view us, aren’t all of our identities false? Because all people view the world differently, wouldn’t our identity be constantly changing depending on whose viewpoint we consider ourselves to be under at the given moment? And in this scenario, wouldn’t our
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Unformatted text preview: identities be not what we believe we are, but what everyone else believes we are? Doesn’t this conclude that no one can decide their own identity, but rather, that we settle for the identity that others assign us? 2) On page 56, Hall states, “Notice the analogy here between language and identity. I know who ‘I’ am in relation to ‘the other’ (e.g. my mother) whom I cannot be.” In this case, can one really know who one is, or can one really only know who one is not? Doesn’t this defeat the entire purpose of the essay by concluding that it is an impossibility to actually determine ones identity?...
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