The New English Dictionary (1999) defines identity as "the distinguishing characteristics of a person." Our identity makes us who and what we are. It could be described as a sense of belonging and about having things in common with others (Weeks, 1990, cited in Austin, 2002, p.1).
"Identity is a dynamic feature of social life. That is, it is something that is constantly evolving and changing. For some people, identity can change rapidly and dramatically, of course, but for most of us our identities evolve slowly and imperceptibly" (Livesey, n.d., p.1).
There are many factors to consider in understanding the process of identity formation. Structuralists believe that we are the product of our society. Therefore there are many environmental and social factors that go into the formation of an identity. For example children that grow up in the bush will have different influences in their lives to children that grow up in the cit...
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...d.). "A" Level Sociology, Teaching Notes for Students. Culture and Identity, 6. Sources of Identity. World Wide Web: http://freespace.virgin.net/chris.livesey/cculture.htm [2002, July, 24].
Márquez, C (1999). Empowering Chicanos Through Self-identity. Faculty Mentor: Olga Vasquez, Ph.D., Department of Communication. World Wide Web: http://www.communication.ucsd.edu/LCM/ectsi.html [30 July, 2002].
Weeks, J. (1990). The value of difference. In J. Austin (Ed.), Culture & Identity (pp.1-3). NSW: Pearson Education Australia.
Woolfolk, A.E. (1998). Educational Psychology. Seventh Edition. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.
McDonald, Kevin (2000). Pressing Questions: explorations in sociology. Issue two. Pearson Education Australia Pty Ltd.
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