The Most Influential Agent Of Socialization For Children?

1033 words - 4 pages

Socialisation is the scientific study of human behaviour and activities. It is concerned with how human beings think and act as social creatures. Socialisation is the process through which we become human. It is through our interaction with society that we learn what is necessary to live in each society.There are four main agents of socialisation: family, school, peers, and mass media. Among these agents some sociologists believe that family is the most important to the child's development. Why? Some sociologists believe family is the most important to the child's development, because within the family we learn self-concept, we also learn the basics of who we are. Family is the best arrangement for bringing up children to be mature.Family is the oldest institution on earth, and it plays a vital role in human society. Most families consist of a father, a mother, and children. Grandparents may live in their own households as long as they can. While contact is kept up with more distant relatives, responsibilities toward these are limited. Parents are considered role models within the family and therefore have a great bearing on our gender role. Some sociologists believe that children are socialised into their gender roles and hence in their gender identities by the family in a lot of ways. The first of these ways is Manipulation. This consists of parents (or other family members) encouraging behaviour that is seen as the norm for the child's gender and discouraging behaviour that is not considered the norm e.g. congratulating a boy for completing an obstacle course but discouraging a girl from attempting the obstacle course. Another method described by some sociologists is Canalisation. This comprises of parents channelling the child's interests into activities that are considered the norm for their gender e.g. encouraging girls to do ballet and encouraging boys to play football. These methods identified by sociologists describe how the family can be considered the most important influence on gender identity as it shows that children can be socialised into their gender identity by the family from a young age.You could refer to the 'Feral Children' as another good example of the importance of primary socialisation. In 1918 two infant girls were lost in a jungle in India. Feral, or wild children are those who, for whatever reason, are not brought up by humans. Theses children where brought up by a pack of wolves. There girls where aged between 5-7 years old. When the girls where found they where like animals, they where naked and ran in a sort of stooped crouch, like our prehistoric ancestors. The girls where afraid of humans, they couldn't talk, laugh, or sing. They ate by pushing their faces into a bowl, and lapped up water instead of using a glass. This could be given as proof that without a family, children cannot begin to conform to society, cannot begin to understand their gender role nor recognise any norm or value of a human being as we would...

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