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the lifelong process by which we learn our culture, develop a personality, and become functioning members of society


science that uses evolutionary theory and genetic inheritance to examine the biological roots of social behaviour

the looking-glass self

what we think of ourselves is influenced by how we imagine other people see us


Mead's term for the element of the self that is spontaneous, creative, impulsive, and often unpredictable


Mead's term for the socialized element of the self

generalized other

a compilation of attributes associated with the average member of society

secondary socialization

occurs through participation in more specific groups with defined roles and expectations

agents of socialization

individuals, groups, and social institutions that together help people to become functioning members of society

cultural capital

social assets (values, beliefs, attitudes, competencies) that are gained from one's family and help one to succeed in life

hidden curriculum

the unconscious, informal, and unwritten norms and rules that reinforce and maintain social conventions

primary socialization

socialization that occurs during childhood

life course

socialization that occur throughout adult life

dying trajectories

the course that dying takes in the social and psychological senses


profound change or complete transformation of a person's personality as a result of being placed in a situation or an environment dedicated to hanging his or her previous identity

total institution

a setting in which people are isolated from society and supervised by an administrative staff

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