Identity

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Identities: Evelyn Grooten
Evelyn Grooten uses numerous authors to define what identity is. She discusses the different aspects of what each author has to say based on their theories of identity. Many definitions of identity have been written in highly abstract philosophical, psychological, and sociological discourses (19). The reader must first grasp the idea of what identity may be. Moving forward each author begins to talk about what identity is on the internet. The article is based upon the different views on how each author views identity on the internet through the instant messaging system.

The reader must first identify who they are before making an attempt to go out into society to establish themselves, meaning they must first have an idea of who they are and what clubs or groups they want to be a part of or associate themselves with. On the internet a person can create an identity that no other can imitate. For instance, with an instant messenger screen name, a person can create a name for themselves that allows them to become an entirely different individual that they want to manifest to others. The person has to be noticed in order for them to be accepted into the discourse and has to be able to scrutinize as to what is really being said. Goffman argues that, “every role, every character one plays has certain behaviors, and shows a different part of one’s identity” (20, 21). When online, one can construct as many identities that is suitable for each category that pertains to the activity they want to join.

Linguist, Emile Benveniste, writes in his essay Subjectivity of Language that language is an important factor when forming an identity. When using the word “I” or “you” it is used indirectly to identify the person to whom is being spoken to. A person’s identity is based upon their language as stated by Benveniste. Language is what defines a person whether it be on the internet or just in a general setting and it identifies the character that...
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