Monday, 6 July 2015
Identity Construction Processes
Self, Identity, and Social Movements (Social movements, protest & contention),
Ed. Sheldon Stryker, Timothy J Owens and Robert W White, University of Minnesota Press, 2000,
Chapter 2 "Identity Work Processes in the Context of Social Movements" (pp. 41-67), page 49
By 'identity construction', Snow and McAdam refer to
... the process through which personal and collective identities are aligned, such that individuals regard engagement in movement activity as being consistent with their self-conception and interests.
They argue that some identity construction is necessary in nearly all cases of individuals participating in movements such, as in the case of my research, as Jews in church.
In some fashion or other, the personal identities of prospective participants have to be modified so as to enhance the congruence with the movement's collective identity.
If you want to join a salsa dancing club for, say, exercise and fitness purposes, but don't like salsa dancing music, then to be happy there you are going to have to change your opinion of the music.
Snow and McAdam identify four processes operaing in the context of social movements: identity amplification, identity consolidation, identity extension and identity transformation.