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    Individual versus common personality traits

  • Allport defines traits as either individual or common in nature. "Strictly speaking, no two persons ever have precisely the same trait. Though each of two men may be aggressive (or aesthetic), the style and range of the aggression (or estheticism) in each case is noticeably different. What else could be expected in view of the unique hereditary endowment, the different developmental history, and the never-repeated external influences that determine each personality? The end product of unique determination can never be anything but unique" (p.297).
  • Allport noted there might be a deep assumption when comparing individuals about the underlying unity or sameness of the population measured. "For all their ultimate differences, normal persons within a given culture-area, tend to develop a limited number of roughly comparable modes of adjustment. The original endowment of most human beings, their stages of growth, and the demands of their particular society, are sufficiently standard and comparable to lead to some basic modes of adjustment that from individual to individual are approximately the same. To take an example: the nature of the struggle for survival in a competitive society tends to force every individual to seek his own most suitable level of aggression... Somewhere between the extremes of exaggerated domination and complete passivity, there lies for each normal individual a level of adaptation that fits his intimate requirements" (pp.197-298).

The role concept

The role concept was introduced in the book The Study of Man by Ralph Linton: 'A status, as distinct from the individual who may occupy it, is simply a collection of rights and duties..a role represents the dynamic aspect of a status... When (an individual) puts the rights and duties into effect, he is performing a role... Status and role serve to reduce the ideal patterns for social life to individual terms. They become models for organizing the attitudes and behavior of the individual so that these will be congruous with those of the other individuals participating in the pattern.'

In the book The Cultural Background of Personality Linton adds to his role explanation: 'The term role will be used to designate the sum total of the culture patterns associated with a particular status. It thus includes the attitudes, values and behavior ascribed by the society to any and all persons occupying the status. It can even be extended to include the legitimate expectations of such person with respect to the behavior towards them of persons of other statuses within the same system.'

Linton put forward a simple twofold classification dividing roles into those which are ascribed ('assigned to individuals without reference to their innate differences or abilities') and those which are achieved ('left open to be filled through competition and individual effort'). The criteria for ascribed roles must be evident at birth, making it possible to begin training immediately and eliminating all uncertainty. Such criteria are those of sex, age, kinship relations, and birth into a particular class or caste. Achieved roles, however, are given are given to the people whose individual performance qualifies them as the most meritorious. This classification is based on the mode of allocation of roles.

Roles are ranked in respect of prestige: the role of surgeon confers more prestige than that of chemist. Prestige is an abstract concept used to sum up the various little form of deference people show to those whom they respect socially and the devices they use to degrade those whom they consider inferior. Prestige is an attribute of roles: all surgeons enjoy the same prestige as representatives of an occupation. People distinguish, however, between outstanding surgeons and mediocre ones; this evaluation of how well someone performs a role is an assessment of esteem. Robertson will be highly esteemed as a radiologist and very little esteemed as a bridge-player. Esteem is thus a judgement of individuals not of roles. In any community or group of acquaintances a man is apt to be ranked on a basis of both these factors. If people could be given so many marks for the prestige of each of their roles, and more marks for the esteem they earn in carrying them out, and then all these could be added up, this would be an arithmetical measure of their social standing in the group. Some groups or communities value certain kinds of behavior more than others but this does not affect the general notion. In practice, such evaluations are made at times even if the process is not altogether conscious and the reckoning is far from arithmetical. It will be apparent that this kind of judgement can be made only in a fairly small community in which people are well acquainted with an individual's various roles and his fulfillment of them. To a certain extent the same procedure is carried out in larger communities or in the nation at large when it is referred to as an assessment of social status: because fewer factors can be taken into account when people are not acquainted with one another personally, judgments of social status are based upon roles held and not upon performance. Social status is therefore different from legal status. It is an evaluation of an individual's claims to deference in respect of the prestige of the various roles he plays: objective measures of social status can be based upon such factors as an individual's occupation, income, length of education, housing, etc.

Questions & Answers

How we are making nano material?
LITNING Reply
what is a peer
LITNING Reply
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
LITNING Reply
What is STMs full form?
LITNING
scanning tunneling microscope
Sahil
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
Bob
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
brayan
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Damian
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
Renato
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
?
Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
why?
Adin
what school?
Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
research.net
kanaga
sciencedirect big data base
Ernesto
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
Bharti
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
Daniel
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
Maciej
characteristics of micro business
Abigail
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Anassong
How can I make nanorobot?
Lily
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
NANO
how can I make nanorobot?
Lily
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
s.
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
Tarell
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
Damian
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
Tarell
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
Virgil
is Bucky paper clear?
CYNTHIA
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
NANO
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Source:  OpenStax, A self help and improvement book: useful psychology information (an integration of personality, social, interaction, communication and well-being psychology). OpenStax CNX. Jul 11, 2016 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11139/1.47
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