Theories of Socialization
Introduction to Sociology
October 20, 2010
Understanding socialization can be a very challenging process which can lead to several theories. There were a few good thinkers from the mid 1800s to the late 1900s that developed a few good theories to understand society.
Sigmund Freud, developer of the “Psychoanalysis” theory, believed the humans have two basic needs or drives that are present at birth. One is the need for sexual and emotional bonding, which he called “life instinct” and the second is an aggressive drive that we all share called the “death instinct”. In his theory the human personality has three parts; the “id” which are the human’s innate, ...view middle of the document...
An advantage that this theory has is that is based on both biological maturation and social experiences.
Lawrence Kohlberg’s theory of moral development is sort of a continuation of Piaget’s work based on moral reasoning where individuals judge situations as right or wrong. This development, similar to Piaget’s, happens in stages. Starting with preconventional level of moral reasoning which is the stage when young children experience the world through pain and pleasure. Next during the conventional stage, by the teen years, young people lose some of their egotism as they learn to define right and wrong in terms of what their parents think and conform to cultural norms. The last stage is the postconventional level. At this stage people think about liberty, freedom, or justice as they move beyond their society norms to consider abstract ethical principles. A disadvantage I think of this theory is that I don’t think it can be applied to people everywhere, especially here in the USA where many people never reach the postconventional level of moral reasoning.
Another great thinker from our text is Carol Gilligan. She compared the development of boys and girls and concluded that they use different standards of rightness. On her theory boys have a justice perspective relying on formal rules to define right or wrong whereas girls, by contrast, have a care and responsibility perspective and judge...