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What Are The Different Types Of Personal Identity Politics Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Politics
Wordcount: 1580 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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There are different types of political identities. These identities include adscripted, free choice, group, and individual identities. Courtney Young explains group identity as universal. It is universal because people are in different types of groups, which includes groups of people with the same race, religion, and culture. With group identity, people will be in groups that have similar interests. By being in groups that will discuss topics that everyone is familiar with, there will be less conflicts because a majority of the group will agree on the topic that’s being discussed or ideas of an event that the group only does. An example of this is religion. With people being in a group with the same religion, a majority of the group will agree on the same topic or event of their religion.

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Along with political identities are material conditions. Material Conditions are resources given to the people, which not everyone has equal access to. Resources were sometimes given to people based on their race and gender. This would lead up to more competing between each individual. An example of material conditions is someone working for the government. By working for the government, the individual has a high identity along with popularity and a high skill level. Then, once the individual makes a mistake and gets fired, the identity decreases.

The next part of political identities is mobilizing discourse. Mobilizing discourse is a requirement that is needed to create political identities. Mobilizing discourse is a language used in the political world that only political leaders and representatives use and understand. This is for the advantage that only political leaders can understand and not constituents. If political leaders used everyday language, then their constituents would be able to understand what is being discussed. Depending on what is being discussed, the conversation can have an effect on the representative if constituents are able to understand.

Along with political identities is apartheid ideology. Apartheid ideology was a sequence describing how people were separated. With apartheid ideology, people were separated by their interests. This is so people would not understand someone from another group. This is similar to segregation, except here, people were separated by their interests. According to Courtney Young, “political identity must be treated as an analytical category…. as the behavior of political identity can not be conflated with commitments that compel cultural, religious or linguistic action or behavior.” [1] 

With all of the parts that create political identities, the last part that is required are institutions. Institutions are places that people can go to learn the kind of political space they are in. There are two types of institutions: state and political. According to Courtney Young, in South Africa, “after the Promotion of Bantu Self Government Act was passed in 1959, the government began to carve up land for different ethic groups and to devolve self-governing status to ‘tribal governments. [2] ‘” After this act was passed, the two types of institutions were created, which allowed people with different interests to attend the institution with people like themselves.

Along with political identities is power. In different societies, power is given differently. According to Hanna Arendt, Max Weber and Betrand Russell, they each had different opinions on how power is used. With Hanna Arendt, she described power as authority. With Max Weber, he used power as how to get economic resources. With Betrand Russell, he used power as propaganda or the media.

After political identities is nation and nationalism. According to Ernest Gellner, political and national should be the same as it would be easier to accomplish what need to be completed. This includes a standardization of language. With a standardization of language, citizens would be able to understand each other rather than trying to translate another language. The standardization of language is how Ernest Gellner describes how a nation is created.

According to Craig Calhoun, he describes nationalism differently than Ernest Gellner does. He describes nationalism like society. This is because nationalism separated multi cultural states. He also describes that nationalism has advanced further over the past two centuries. Nationalism has advanced further because more ideas have been created on what nationalism is, along with different types of nationalism. These types of nationalism include Good Nationalism in opposition to Bad Nationalism. With Bad Nationalism, it is similar to patriotism. A popular dialogue defines patriotism. With Good Nationalism, it is similar to chauvinism. Chauvinism is defined as being violent, unfair or dominant.

With a nation, Craig Calhoun also described it differently. The first method is having boundaries. Boundaries include having boarders and territories. The second method is having indivisibility. With indivisibility, it is the authentic form of identity. The third method is sovereignty. With sovereignty, it is a satisfied way of being independent. The fourth method is the continuously rising concept of authority. This is a popular authority as it is an acceptable approach to a government response. The fifth method is collective affairs. With collective affairs, allies are able to trade resources and goods with each other. The sixth method is culture. This method is similar to Ernest Gellner’s definition of nation as it includes the same language and beliefs. The seventh method is national holidays. By having national holidays it is a standardization that repeats every year.

Following a nation is modernity and nationalism. Craig Calhoun describes nationalism as a creation of states. By forming states, it brings a new awareness of national identity. With modernity, it is being mapped because as a nation expands mapping how the modernity is expanded. For example, a new nation might start off with one state, but as the public migrates to it, they will settle on one end of the state and will continue to move to the other end, as more space will be considered necessary. As the migration continues, more states will also be created to help map where everybody is located. This is similar to how the United States was created; where it started with the Original 13 Colonies but continued to expand further west when more space was wanted.

Furthermore, the next part involved with nationalism is modern industrial democracies. Lawrence Mayer describes that in order to have a western democracy, a workforce is required. This workforce started when factories were created and less farming was essential. Before factories, more farming was wanted because it was how many products were created.

The last part that is involved with nationalism is elections. According to Joseph Schumpeter, elections are involved with representatives trying to win a part in the political leadership. This is one of the biggest parts involved in a democratic republican country, as during the range of months before the election, there is a lot of competing between the representatives, which includes a lot of advertising.

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In Western Industrialized Democracies, it is a little different the remaining countries. The first way is instability. With instability, the power given isn’t allowed to be held for a long term. Instead, the power given to the representative elected is only allowed to be held for either two or four years. The number of years allowed in office is divided between the branches of government. For example, the president is given four years in office and the House of Representatives are given two years in office.

Along with everything mentioned above, there are some ways that these topics are linked to one another. The first topic is power, which is linked to identity as the type of power an individual has can describe how the individual is identified. With mapping modernity, it is linked to mapping power because as modernity progresses, more power is required.

The second topic is a nation, which it is linked to democracy, as democracy is a type of nation. The type of a country democracy is usually found in is a democratic republican country and not a communist country.

The third topic is technology. With technology, Ernest Gellner and Lawrence Mayer have the same type of idea. Lawrence Mayer’s idea of the workforce is linked with Ernest Gellner’s idea of standardization. By having a workforce, a standardization of jobs and careers are created.

As identity, nationalism and democracy are all liked to one another, the only part that is mixed into them is power. Without power, identity, nationalism and democracy can’t be created. Power is required to decide the type of identity an individual has, the type of nation that’s created and the type of system that’s involved with the creation of the nation, like democratic republican or communism. These are all of the topics that have a similarity with each other.


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