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Agents of Sociology

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4/6/08
Agents of Sociology

Socialization is an important factor in everyone’s life. No matter one’s color, race,

gender, etc, socialization occurs and brings about a social identity for every individual.

How the individual chooses to adapt to their environment and develop their own sense of

self is the important sociological question here. Teenagers today face pressure from

various socialization agents such as the media, schools, the peer group and the family.

These socialization agents influence adolescents in different ways both negatively and

positively. Each agent has its positive and negative effects.

The first and biggest part of this process is the family. The family affects everyone

the most because they are the ones around the most. Families are the first ones to teach

their children and what people learn first sticks to them for the rest of their life. Trust

plays a big role too. Kids trust their parents and have not received the knowledge to know

if they are being misinformed. Parents also have the control to isolate children from other

forms of politics.

The media manipulates individuals, especially teenagers. The media does this by

creating an image of a person a teenager would want to be and promotes this image with

products such as clothes, food and cosmetics. Research shows that more than 60 percent

of teenagers that live in the U.S. today find themselves buying products they have seen

advertised on television or magazines.

In the novel The Outsiders, Ponyboy Curtis was also influenced by the media. For

example, we see how he sees the movies of Paul Newman and wishes he could be more

like the image portrayed on the screen as Ponyboy says, “I was wishing I looked like

Paul Newman, he looks tough.” Likewise, Ponyboy enjoys becoming involved in the

lives of these imaginary characters he sees on the television or the movie screen....

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