Alphonso N. Scallion
This research paper aims to explore different peer reviewed articles to validate how the author’s behaviors are socially transmitted through three layers of culture. The behaviors discussed are the author’s use of self-identification, prayer, and work. In discussing the behaviors, cultural inspiration and research is used to explain how they relate to and are affected by different aspects of culture. Much of the research will be influenced by the author’s culture in being a person of color, a part of the millennial generation, and of Christian faith. For example, in self-identification, the author links how a millennial’s shaping of identity can be influenced due to the use of social media and technology, Christianity shaping identity through using old experiences and discipleship, and the use of language to aid in identifying with race. Likewise, prayer and work also are examined in similar fashion, concluding that similar transmissions can aid in the validation of an individuals behaviors.
Keywords: technology, religion, generation, race, black, African-American, Christianity,
In this paper, we will look at different behaviors that I, the author, possess and how three layers of culture, generation, religion, and race influence them. The first of these is the behavior of self-identity.
Self-Identification has been a constant behavior in my personal life, trying to assimilate to the different roles that are expected by different cultures that I am a part of everyday. Generationally, as a Millennial, being connected to people through social networking and digital technology such as cellphones and tablets, there can be a difficulty in forming a self-identity. One explanation is presented by Horan (2010) stating that, “(Self-identification) is complicated further when one considers that a Millennial faces a decrease in his or her ability to control identity as others perceive it” (p. 83). Later Horan (2010), explains how being connected to virtual worlds is like living a “Second Life” (p. 86). In my pre-teens, I was baptized into Christ, a spiritual requirement by the Church of Christ in order to become a disciple and member of the group. Today, I question and reason trying to self-identify with my spirituality and find my true place in Christianity. Wiher (2010) validates religious self-identification in stating that, “ It is an important goal in the discipleship process to build up an identity ‘in Christ’… Identity is then constructed in a process during which past experiences, values and thought systems are integrated into a unified, organized and coherent personality structure” (p. 317).
As a product of two different racial cultures, self-identification has been one the most ongoing behaviors I engage in with race. My father is Black and mother is Hispanic (Mexican). Nakashima, Root, and Wallace share that “children of mixed marriages face a number of challenges in constructing their identity… with different discourses and expectations, they must negotiate group boundaries” (as cited by Shin, 2010). What has helped most in my self-identification process with both races is the ability to speak both English and Spanish. Wallace validates this in the JOURNAL OF LANGUAGE, IDENTITY, AND EDUCATION stating that, “Learning a heritage language may provide some mixed-heritage students with a means for gaining greater access and legitimacy within the ethnic group” (as cited by Shin, 2010). Prayer, another behavior I possess, is also transmitted by generation, religion, and race. As a Millennial college student, life can be stressful. Because life is stressful, I use prayer as coping mechanism in order to better focus on what is important. Although, prayer is a behavior I use to cope with stress, it can also be seen as a way to avoid issues that need to be addressed