The word identity has become the most discussed idea in our society. It is described mostly, to be a word that stands for who we are. Therefore, because of who we are, identity has come to be a word that we use to claim and understand people’s actions in our society. So in this paper I will be analysing how social practices surrounding identity relates to gender in social, personal levels, through the work of three authors; by Ian Hacking on “kind making”, Margaret Somers on “Narrative construction of identity” and finally, Frederick Cooper and Rogers Brubaker on “beyond identity” . However, I will tilt more toward Frederick Cooper and Rogers Bruakers article on identity. This is because I feel that their article contributes better to my understanding of how identity relates to gender. Therefore, I hope to fully be able to outline how identity relates to gender.
First and foremost, I will look at how Identity relate to gender on a social and personal level. The reason for analysing the articles in these levels is because; the articles seem to talk of identity in either a macro, micro or in both level. First off, to show how far we can stretch and connect identity to explain many things, people and activities accoutring in our society. I will speak of the aspects of Identity and gender at a social level that are mentioned in all three articles. Identity on a social level is approached as an idea that was constructed by and used by a group of people.
First, Ian Hacking author of “Kind-Making; The case of Child abuse”, looks at the concept of child abuse as a socially constructed idea. In his article he speaks of kind making, which he identifies as the process of constructed ideas, ideas such as identity. These Constructed ideas are “any ideas that is debated, assessed, applied and developed, is situated in a social setting.” (Pg. 175), “made at a definite time, at a definite place, in the discussion of some authoritative people (pediatricians)” (Pg. 175). For example, feminism, it an idea that was constructed society in the same process that a anyone who is now identified as a Child abuser will be labelled to have an idea that was socially constructed becoming a word that represent them, similar to a lot of people who presently see themselves as feminist. Feminist, is an idea that was created by few with a gaol to have equal gender equality in a patriarchal society. This idea was then spread to other woman to motivate them to accept and for support. As a result of many people accepting the idea, this led to the idea being institutionalized and laws being created to support it. In addition, physical buildings being created to make sure such as public and school gender neutral toilets. Therefore, the social level of ideas such as identity are accessed when we analyze how it was constructed and how it has been able to stay rooted in our society, such as mention before, through materializing the ideas of identity and gender.
As far as ideas...