Document 1: How do people learn to become human beings?
People are born into an existing cultural system. In order to learn how to behave in society, therefore, arrangements have to be made for people to fit-into existing patterns of behaviour and we call this a process of socialisation.
Learning how to become human and to behave in ways that accord with the general expectations of others (in short, to be socialised) is a process that begins at birth and continues throughout our life. We never stop learning how to behave, mainly because our society is always changing and we are continually faced with learning how to behave in new and different situations.
1) What is socialisation? 2) When does it begin? 3) When does it end?
Document 2: Shocking truth of the puppy boy
To rear: élever
A puppy: un chiot
Bring up (ici): élever
Shepherd bitch: un chien de berger femelle
To crouch: s’accroupir, se tapir
Blanket : une couverture
Naked : nu
To bark : aboyer
To groom: toiletter
To file a suit against: intenter un procès contre
Source: The Sydney Morning Herald, March 20, 1988
Question: can someone be truly human if they grow up without human contact?
Document 3: Two basic types of socialisation
Primary socialisation occurs between the individual and those people in their life with whom they have primary relationships. A primary relationship is one in which the individual has a close, personal, intimate and face-to-face relationship with the people that are responsible for the socialisation process. For most of us, the first primary relationship we form is with our parent(s) or guardians - the people who are charged with the initial socialisation process.
Secondary socialisation occurs between the individual and those people in their life with whom they have secondary relationships. A secondary relationship is one in which the individual does not have a close, personal, intimate or face-to-face relationship with the people that are responsible for the socialisation process. Secondary socialisation is necessary because it represents the way that we start to learn about the nature of the social world beyond our primary contacts. We have to learn to deal with people who are not emotionally close to us, mainly because the vast majority of the people we will come into contact with in our adult lives will be dealt with unemotionally. Secondary socialisation occurs between the individual and those people in their life with whom they have secondary relationships. A secondary relationship is one in which the individual does not have a close, personal, intimate or face-to-face relationship with the people that are responsible for the socialisation process.
Talcott Parsons claimed that one of the main purposes (or functions as he called it) of secondary socialisation is to "Liberate the individual from a dependence upon the primary attachments and relationships formed within the family group".
1) What is primary socialisation? 2) What is secondary socialisation? 3) Explain Parsons’ definition of secondary socialisation.
Document 4: Agents of socialisation
We normally refer to the people responsible for our socialisation as agents of socialisation and, by extension, we can also talk about agencies of socialisation (such as our family, the education system, the workplace and so forth).
- The first agency that takes responsibility for primary socialisation is the family, and the main agents of socialisation are a child's parents and relations. In a family group, for example, we learn many of the basic characteristics of being human in terms of our particular society. For example, we learn how to:
• Walk, • Talk, • Use various tools, such as knives and forks and so forth.
he family group doesn't just teach us the physical characteristics of being human, however. Our parents use their values to try to teach us things like:
• The difference between right and wrong behaviour and how to relate appropriately to others (family, friends, strangers, etc.).
- When we think about agencies of secondary socialisation we can talk about education, religion, the mass media, etc. Agents of socialisation will consequently be teachers, priests, television personalities, rock stars and so forth. In some cases, such as school and teachers, we are in daily, face-to-face contact with the people who are socialising us without ever developing a primary attachment to them. In other cases, such as admiring a particular film or rock star, we may never meet them, yet we can still be influenced by what they look like, what they do and how they do it.
1) Why might a person being released from prison after serving a long sentence experience difficulties? 2) Is socialisation a one-way process of taking in ideas? Explain your answer. 3) Think of two social groups you belong to. They can be formal groups with a recognized membership, such as a class at school, a church, club or society, or informal such as a group of friends. In what way do these groups influence the way you think and behave? 4) Fill in the table below:
Describe the patterns of behavior that are expected and accepted from his role
Exercise: Sum up!
Include a minimum of three keywords associated with the items listed.
Research has consistently shown that children from working-class backgrounds do not on average do as well in school as those from middle-class backgrounds. They are also less likely to go to further and higher education. (…) This may be a matter of money, but it can also reflect differences in values. Middle-class children are more likely to have been socialized into ideas about how it is important to do well, and how it is worth studying hard to get a good job in the future. (…)
Working-class may even find the way they speak holds up their achievement. Success in school requires being able to speak and write in what is seen as ‘correct’ English; middle class children are likely to find this easier because they have more across it more often. (…) Living conditions at home may help middle-class students to study. They are more likely to have a quiet place to do homework, for example. Middle-class parents are also more likely to be able to provide books in the home, educational toys, a computer to use, or visits to museum and art galleries.
1) How can home environment influence pupil achievement? 2) Explain the underlined sentence.
Exercise 2 Oliver Twist, Roman Polanski (2005)
After having watched the movie, fill in this table:
One of the largest toy chains in Sweden published a gender-neutral Christmas catalogue, which pictured boys playing with dolls and girls holding toy machine guns. The move has reignited a debate in Sweden over the proper place of gender roles.
Top Toy has produced children’s Christmas catalogues in Denmark and Sweden for both Toys R Us and BR. Though the catalogues' page layouts are the same in both countries, the gender of the pictured kids is reversed in the Swedish edition.
"With the new gender thinking, there is nothing that is right or wrong. It's not a boy or a girl thing, it's a toy for children," Top Toy director of sales Jan Nyberg told TT news agency.
The Danish catalogue showed a boy wielding a toy machine gun, which was replaced by a girl in the Swedish version. The "Hello Kitty" page of the Swedish catalogue also replaced a girl with a boy, and a one girl's pink t-shirt was turned into light blue.
The move is a profound shift in strategy for Top Toy. In 2008, the company was criticized by Swedish advertising watchdog Reklamombudsmannen (RO) for encouraging outdated gender roles with catalogues that featured boys dressed as superheroes and girls as princesses.
Since 2008, the government has spent 110 million Swedish crowns ($16.3 million) on promoting gender equality in schools, including the introduction of laws requiring teachers to actively work to reverse gender stereotypes.
The country also proposed a new single gender-neutral pronoun – 'hen' – to replace 'he' and 'she' in order to minimize gender stereotyping.
1) Give examples of gender stereotypes. 2) Why did Top toy’s catalogue go “gender neutral”? 3) Quote other initiatives of Swedish government to promote gender equality.
- Active sociology for GSCE, J. Blundell, Longman Editions, 2001 - A level Sociology, Teaching notes for students, Culture and identities, www.socio.org.uk- A level Sociology, Exploring society, culture and identity, October 2014, OCR.
 To fit into patterns of behaviour: s’adapter, s’ajuster à des modèles de comportement  A set of norms that goes with a position in society
Les derniers liens vers des articles et des ressources