Drawing on appropriate evidence describe how groups can influence people in positive and negative ways. This essay Will explore how groups can influence people in positive and negative ways and how these groups help to establish people’s identities. It will firstly explain what brings people together in the first instance by their individual identities and what attracts people to one another generally because they share something in common.
Secondly, how coming together as a group can have a positive effect on people in a sense that it promotes a feeling of belonging and anally, the negative effect a group can have on a person encouraging them to act and behave in ways which they may not have done 50 before, Group cohesiveness is the force bringing group members together. The main factors which influence group cohesiveness are the similarities that people share. Theories have shown that if people share similar characteristics to one another it will have a positive effect promoting a feeling of closeness and a sense of self- belonging.Order now
The characteristics most commonly shared consist of age, gender, work, ethnicity, social class, values, nationality, religion, hobbies etc and will expectedly become the composition of the group. Identity is a person’s conception and expression Of their individuality or group affiliation. What is considered to be a person’s personality and characteristics and how Others see them Which in turn influences behavior and how we see ourselves.
Identity can be distinguished been personal identity such as individual qualities, personality and feelings and social identity being a broader sense of identity within group membership. The purpose of this essay will look at and concentrate more specifically on social identity and the social influences room within different groups. Sharing a social identity with other people can promote a sense of belonging and raise self-esteem. It is a person’s sense of who they are based on their group membership.
In order to enhance self-image we cornea between the people like “us” the “in group” (to whom people tend to have a positive attitude towards) and people who are different, the “out-group” (the group we do not belong to) by negatively stereotyping, discriminating and being prejudice towards and having a strong desire to compete against “them”. The distinction between the two roofs is evidenced by the experiment referred to as “Robbers Cave” conducted by (Muzzier Sheriff et al_ (1961), cited in Spoors et I) which involved a group of boys at summer camp being split into two groups to take part in a competition.
The attitudes towards each other within the groups ever of the norms of behavior and vatu is to be expected, as very encouraging showing a number of positive traits; solidarity, support towards one another, cooperating and working as ream. Group loyalty and sense Of pride was Of a high level. On the other hand, this experiment revealed a negative approach developing awards each another’s group showing their competitive attitudes and prejudice nature in which they communicated such as name calling and their aggressive mannerisms.
However, when the groups were put together again the attitudes towards each other was positive and highly successful. It is evident from this experiment how groups can interact positively. Social identity can also influence people negatively to behave or act in ways they may not have done without the tacking of a group”. Conformity is the tendency for group members to change their behavior in order to fit in with a group as hon. in an experiment instituted by (Solomon Cash (1 955), cited in Spoors et al. , 2011) which illustrates ‘Yielding to group pressure”.
The experiment takes a small group of people to show how the participants perceive things. The group is shown a picture of a straight line then tether given a picture of three more straight lines in different lengths and then asked to pick out the line equal to the original straight line. The people in the group, all but one were all in league with the experimenter and occasionally gave a false answer intentionally. The purpose of the experiment avgas to see whether or not the one genuine participant felt the need to conform to group pressure and agree with the other members of the group.
Conformity can be perceived as being negative in that it manipulates people into giving an Obvious incorrect answer. On a positive note however, conformity helps society to function in that it sets a standard for people to operate by. In a broader sense some psychologists argue that “our identities are so fluid that we could be said to have “multiple selves” which emerge and evolve according o the social context be©re in and the broader cultural context” (Waterwheel and Maybe, (1996), cited in Spoors et al, 201 1) Social constructionists believe that people are very much influenced by the culture and context they are in.
Culture can impact on a person’s self-concept as the need for social acceptance overcomes, These multiple identities can be evidenced in Sounds story (Doreen Condo, (1990), cited in Spoors et al, 201 1) whereby, a Japanese American sets out her personal account of her experience living in Japan whilst carrying out academic anthropological research which is the study of origin and social relationship of people.
In becoming accustomed to the Japanese culture Condo immersed herself within the taking on of new roles and learning about her new relationships and interactions with Japanese people, she believes she acquired a new sense of self. As she conformed to expectations within the family, upon their appraisal and compliments towards her she developed positive feelings which in turn encouraged her to act further in such ways as she perceived was expected of her to coincide with the eastern world.
On the other hand, Condo felt an extreme conflict in vat her obligations were and what was expected of her as a woman surrounding the subservient manner she was to take on during mealtime (serving the head of the household, the male, first and receiving very little if any gratitude) and furthermore, adjusting to the foreign etiquette customary of a woman which differed somewhat to her own western culture. The social obligations Condo’s Story demonstrates shows how people’s multiple social identities seem to evolve within each new situation they are presented with.
Drawing from appropriate evidence and psychological theories this essay hopefully illustrates and explains our social identities and the many different objective characteristics which people can share and relate to and will consequently lead them to associate themselves within a group membership. From within groups a person’s thinking and behavior is influenced. The evidence Shows how people come to gain positive influences from the norms of behavior when part of an ‘fin-group” and develop a sense of belonging and self.
With this in mind, people can also react and go against their usual manner and behave totally out of character in a prejudicial and discriminating way towards the “out-group”. This essay has also touch upon the ways in which group pressure to conform to what is expected of oneself can make a person feel very pressurized and have a negative effect and further, according to the environment we are in and the cultural differences we experience how we can adapt ourselves to come accustom and therefore show Our multiple selves Which can also play a vital role within the positive and negative effects groups can have on people.