Society Influences Identity by Jessica Canar

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Jessica Canar
Ms. Armbrester
AP English III
March 8, 2013
Thesis: Throughout centuries, the interactions humans have encountered with society is what severely defines who people are and how it influences their identity. I. Experience

A. At birth people go through experience.
B. Humans learn through conditioning and get the idea of right and wrong which determines identity. C. “we are who we are because of all the experiences that brought us to this point” (Phelps par. 14). II. Media

A. Responsible for shaping and influencing identity.
B. In Tashlin’s book the bear was told that he was not a bear and society convinces to change his identity. C. The youth is strongly affected by media.
III. Stereotypes
A. People lose their own individual identity with stereotypes. B. “Everyone is shaped by innumerable influences such as ethnicity, religion, class, race, age, profession, the geographical regions they and their relatives have lived in and many other group identities…”(Tashlin par.1) C. Example based on the listed like:” If you are blonde you must be dumb. If you are Hispanic you must be Mexican…” IV. Acceptance

A. People will do whatever it takes to be accepted.
B. Decrease in self-esteem and overtime suicide is committed. C. The identity is forgotten by the corruption of society.

All humans, all individuals are unique. People carry personalities that define their identities but most of the time it is influenced by opinions and views of others. Throughout centuries, the interactions humans have encountered with society is what severely defines who people are and how it influences their identity. Humans at the start of birth go through the phase of experience. This experience leads to how each individual responds to everyday situations. It is the conditioning that people learn overtime what is right and wrong. The media plays a major role in identity, which follows how people view stereotypes. By this society determines if a person is accepted or rejected. No human can escape this bitter world of influence.

Habitually, parents teach their children what is right and what is wrong once they are born. As a part of life, children will learn lessons and morals from their parents and their surroundings. As time goes by a person will know how to respond back to common situations because the person was taught, so hence it will be a natural reaction or instinct once it is learned. This is called conditioning. Without realizing it, a person has gone through experience. In the article, Head Full of Doubt/ Road Full of Promise, Megan Phelps states “we are who we are because of all the experiences that brought us to this point” (par. 14). This statement is accurate because society teaches at infancy how to dress, how to speak, how to eat, how to walk and even in what to believe. This was the case of Megan and her sister Grace. They grew up believing in everything the Westboro Baptist Church had to offer. Their family was the foundation of this church. This made every experience the sisters had be influenced by their surroundings. There was no doubt of them not knowing right from wrong in the society that taught them everything they knew.

Humans can experience right and wrong situations on a daily basis. For instance, how everyone has a different view on manners. Imagine a 23 year old woman walking around public picking her nose. Society will judge, give the woman unpleasant looks and possibly a person could walk...
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