WSep5 - What is the “Nature versus Nurture” Debate...

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Unformatted text preview: What is the “Nature versus Nurture” Debate? Nurture” Wednesday, September 5 Wednesday, Angie Andriot, Instructor Nature or Nurture? Nature concerns the relative importance of an concerns individual's innate qualities ("nature") versus personal experiences ("nurture") in determining individual differences in behavior. We will first examine the nuances of “nature,” We then move on to “nurture.” then Finally we will apply this to the American status Finally system system Sociology Culture Mind Genes Psychology Biology What is human nature? What Human nature is that which humans do Human DESPITE or IRREGARDLESS of culture or socialization socialization Human nature can be viewed as: a blank slate (tabula rasa) –John Locke blank (tabula our natural state (feral children) our (feral what separates us from animals –Karl Marx what –Karl what determines our behavior –Hernstein & Murray Increasing influence What is human nature? What On alienation (a conflict theory example): “As a result, therefore, man (the worker) no As longer feels himself to be freely active in any but his animal functions—eating, drinking, procreating, or at most in his dwelling and in dressing-up, etc., and in his human functions he no longer feels himself to be anything but an animal. What is animal becomes human and what is human becomes animal.” -Marx (Communist Manifesto) -Marx Moving on to “nurture”… Moving Socialization: the process by which Socialization: individuals learn the characteristics of their group—the knowledge, skills, attitudes, values, and actions thought appropriate for them appropriate This process of socialization occurs in This childhood, starting at birth childhood, How are we socialized? How The development of self (a symbolic The interactionist example): interactionist Self: our view of who we are, as Self: determined by Reflexivity- capacity to think of ourselves as Reflexivityan object an Looking-glass self- our internalization of Looking-glass what others think of us (Cooley) what Our sense of self, then, develops from our Our interactions with others Cooley and the Looking-Glass Self Self Each to each a looking-glass Reflects the other that doth pass. 1. We imagine how we appear to those We around us around 2. We interpret others’ reactions 3. We develop a self-concept Mead and Role-Taking Mead Mead also believed the self was created Mead through interaction. His focus was on role-taking, or taking the role of the other role-taking, Stage 1 (0-3): Imitation (no sense of self) Stage 2 (3-6): Play (take role of significant Stage others—those influential to child) others Stage 3 (6-?): Game (take role of Stage generalized other—the group as a whole) generalized other So why does this matter? So RELIGION Are humans fundamentally good, evil, or neutral? Are What makes people do “bad” things? What POLITICS Is a person’s sexuality something they are born Is with? Can it be “overcome”? LAW Should we focus on retribution or rehabilitation? Should gays be allowed to marry? Should Should women be allowed in the army? An application: An American values- according to the American textbook, Americans value equality & promote group superiority? How is this possible? possible? Meritocracy- a society in which status is determined by ability and talent, rather than income, race, heritage, etc. than The Bell Curve (1994) The Determining Causation: Determining 1. Race/SES Intelligence Race/SES 2. Intelligence Race/SES Intelligence 3. Race/SES ? Intelligence Race/SES On Friday: We will examine the agents of We socialization (i.e. NURTURE) socialization Readings: Finish Chapter 3 Reader: “Anybody’s Son Will Do” (26-36) ...
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