What happens in socialization is that the social world is internalized within the child. The same process, though perhaps weaker in quality, occurs every time the adult is initiated into a new social context or a new social group. Society, then, is not only something "out there," in the Durkheimian sense, but it is also "in here," part of our innermost being.
Peter L. Berger, Invitation to Sociology
The following series of quotes may be viewed as representations of the central issues in Chapter 3.
"Were it not for socialization, the renewal of culture could not occur from one generation to the next. . . Both the individual and society are mutually dependent on socialization."
(text, p. 68)
"The cases of Anna, Isabelle, and Genie testify to the inadequacy of our biological equipment for producing a normal human personality in the absence of social interaction."
(text, p. 68)
"We humans, then, are not locked into an unchangeable physical body nor an unchangeable social system; both can change and each exerts an influence on the other. In learning, we modify ourselves by responding; we literally change ourselves by acting." (text, p. 70)
"Communication allows us to establish "commonness" with one another; senders and receivers can come together through a given message. It is this commonness that makes socialization possible." (text, p. 74)
". . . culture may be thought of as the agreed-upon meanings--the shared definitions of situations--that individuals acquire as members of a society. Socialization is the process by which these shared definitions are learned and by which they are transmitted from one generation to the next." (text, p. 78)
"The self represents the ideas we have regarding our attributes, capacities, and behavior. These conceptions represent the heart of our humanness, our awareness that each of us is a unique being apart from other beings and is the same person across time." (text, p. 79)
"Socialization is a continuing, lifelong process. The world about us changes and requires that we also change. The self is not carved in granite." (text, p. 83)
"People locate themselves during the life course not only in terms of social timetables but also in terms of life events--turning points at which people change some direction in the course of their lives." (text, p. 88)
From these quotes, six major instructional objectives may be inferred. They are:
1. Conveying the sociological view of "human nature";
2. Showing the relationship between society and the individual during the formation of human personality;
3. Explaining perspectives on the process by which people determine the kind of person they are (self concept) in relation to other members of their society.
4. Identifying the patterns of change that people undergo throughout their life course.
5. Exploring the patterns of adaptation that people utilize as they experience life transitions.
6. Understanding the meaning and significance of the...