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Subject: La110 Academic Communication Course: Bachelor Of Social Science (Youth Work) Lecturer: Mr Sargent Major Assessment Task #3: Research Pape

2293 words - 10 pages

Who people believe they are will determine the way in which they live out their life. Many young people of Australia identify themselves in terms of their school, family situation, relationships or even their sports or academics. However, the underlying issue is that who a person believes they are will determine the limitations that they apply to their life. The following essay looks at the issue of identity and how it affects the lives of Australian young people. It will discuss the contributing factors and the effects that these have on the way young people live. A variety of on ground organisations that focus on different youth issues that are all the result of an identity crisis is to be ...view middle of the document...

Bottrell (2007), in the ‘Journal of youth studies article’, discusses two forms of identity: firstly, identity that is created by the individual; whom they desire to be. The other is the identity that is “ascribed” to an individual by other persons (pp. 597 – 616). Nevertheless, whether a young person chooses or is ascribed an identity, it is irrelevant if, the basis on which they answer the question “Who am I?” is founded on the things of this world. Bauman (2004) argues that a person’s identity is comprised of “a bunch of problems rather than a single-issue campaign” (p. 12). Driscoll (2013) however, very much so disagrees, by stating that:
This world’s fundamental problem is that we don’t understand who we truly are – children of God made in his image – and instead define ourselves by any number of things other than Jesus. Only by knowing our false identity apart from Christ in relation to our true identity in him can we rightly deal with and overcome the issues in our lives (p. 2).
Therefore, people who define themselves by the car they drive or the sickness with which they are afflicted are essentially unable to endure and overcome all the hardships that arise in their life. Who a person is, is the foundation of how they will live their life and will determine how they respond to their circumstances. Jesus declares that “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away” (Matthew 24: 35, ESV). Young people then, that draw their identity from anything that is not God will find themselves in despair as all that derive their identity from will eventually fail. Subsequently, many of the young people of Australia cling to anything that they can in the hope of establishing their identity.
The contributing factors causing young people to have a destructive source of identity can be seen in what Driscoll calls identity idolatry which is represented in the acronym I.D.O.L.S (2013, pp. 7 – 13). Firstly, many young people seek their identity in Items. They construct their identity with the clothes they wear or technology they possess. Secondly, young people will try to construct their identity based on the Duties they perform. Young people seek to excel in sports, academics, the arts, business etc. so that they can “outperform others and demonstrate ‘their’ superiority” (p. 8). Young people will also draw their identity from Others. Like mentioned previously, many young people have an identity forced upon them. They live in the fear of what people will say and think of them. Countless amounts of young people create their identity from their Longings. They persevere through today in the hope that tomorrow will be greater day. Lastly, young people define themselves by their Sufferings. They allow their pain and hurt to be the source of their identity. Young people answer the question “Who am I?” with these identity idols. One example of this is revealed by Carole Cain’s 2009 article about alcoholics going through “a transformation of...

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