Constructionist Approach To Ethnic Identity

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The classical method of categorization provided by P. Q. Yang divides ethnical identity theories into three main approaches: the primordialist school, the constructionist school and the instrumentalist school. The first approach received its name because it underlines the role of original factors, such as descent and cultural ties. Primordialist school defines ethnic as assigned identity, something rooted and fixed. Therefore, identity cannot be changed because ethnicity is inherited from predecessors and determined by bloodline. Boundaries between members of different groups are strict and strongly prescribed by biological and cultural origins. The members of the group associate themselves with common biological descent and cultural traditions.…show more content…
On the one hand, aspiration is provided by outside institutions (government, media, schools, etc.) which pushed a person to the particular ethnic group. On the other hand, hostility, discrimination and conflicts helped to consolidate a group of people against adversities and provided ground for group identity. According to the theory, the creation of ethnic identity depended on the larger societies. Hence, one can see that constructionist school focus mainly on historical force and social influence on ethnicity. Despite the constructionist approach better explains possible changes in identity; it does not pay appropriate attention to the economic and political effect on shaping the ethnic…show more content…
Psychology places the individual at the centre of analyses with an emphasis on two main elements: value system and self-esteem. The benefit of psychological perspective is that it investigates the close links and connections between the individual and society. It also provides scientists with dualistic approach to ethnic identity which is expressed in two-level analyses: from the whole ethnic group perspective (group ethnic identity) and from perspective of individual actors (individual ethnic identity) . Both levels are not separate from each other; on the contrary, they tend to co-influence and even coincide. This happens because a person cannot act exclusively as a part of any social group, identity influences the most personal relationships as

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