Intro to Socio

Topics: Sociology, Gaza Strip, Charles Cooley Pages: 4 (1355 words) Published: May 6, 2013
Sociologists argue that all human beings – regardless of the culture they grow up in – are shaped and molded by their immediate surroundings and the people they encounter. To demonstrate this, they focus on the processes of socialization, which refers to the lifelong social experience by which people develop their human potential and learn culture. What is most important here is the recognition that although the actual content of each culture that is being learned - the cultural beliefs, values, attitudes, norms, customs and traditions – might be different, the processes through which this learning occurs is fundamentally the same. In what follows, I will illustrate this main point by examining the portrayal of three children growing up along the Gaza strip in the movie “Death in Gaza.” Through an analysis of the experiences of Ahmed and his best friend Mohammud – two twelve year old boys – and Najla – a sixteen year old girl – I will indicate how the process of socialization they experienced is no different from the one I have experienced half a world away in the United States. Sociologists use various concepts to guide their analysis of the socialization process. Here I shall discuss five: looking-glass self, role models, primary groups, significant others, and reference groups. Although it may certainly change over one’s lifetime, all people develop a self-image. To indicate the process through which this typically occurs, Charles Horton Cooley introduced the term looking-glass self. According to Cooley this is a term for a self-image based on how we think others see us. What we think of ourselves depends on how we think others see us. This is clearly seen in the film. I think in the video Ahmed believes he is not just a little boy, he wants to become a soldier for his country. So he believes others must see him not just a little boy but a soldier. An example of this term for Najla in the film would be maybe she thinks everyone just sees her as another...
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