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[Xmca-l] Re: identity expressed or formed by action?

That sounds good, Stephen, but I don't see any "drive to express identity" in there. I do think there is a drive to form and preserve social bonds, but this is not the *expression* of affiliative identity; perhaps the source of "affiliative identity," and the objective basis for an imposed identity (as opposed to a self-identity), but not something created by a desire or drive to express a pre-existing identity.



Andy Blunden
On 15/02/2017 9:36 PM, Stephen Walsh wrote:
Hi Andy,
I think that the answer is both. I think we need to think of identities as heterogeneous rather than homogeneous. Looking at identity (dis)continuity following brain injury is instructive. Research we have conducted with brain injury survivors taking part in post acute community neurorehabilitiation shows that identities deriving from the groups we belong to (affiliative identities; e.g. familiy) generate social support which facilitates the formation of 'self as doer' identities (e.g. painter, walker etc etc).
Best Regards,

On Wed, Feb 15, 2017 at 7:30 AM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>> wrote:

    I would be interested in any helpful comments (other
    than suggestions for more books to read) from my xmca
    psychologist friends on this problem.

    In discussion with a friend, who is very au fait with
    contemporary social philosophy, but knows nothing of
    CHAT, suggested to me a number of ideas intended to be
    explanatory (rather than descriptive) of current
    social and political trends. He talks about the rise
    of "expressive authenticity" since the 1970s and
    "collective action as a means to express selfhood." In
    response, I questioned whether there is any such thing
    as a drive to *express* one's identity, and that
    rather, collective action (and there is fundamentally
    no other kind of action) in pursuit of needs of all
    kinds (spiritual, social and material) is *formative*
    of identity.

    A classic case for analysis is the well-known
    observation that nowadays people purchase (clothes,
    cars, food, ...) as a means of expressing their
    identity. I question this, because it presumes that
    there is the innate drive to express one's identity,
    which I see no evidence for. I think people adopt
    dress styles in much the same way that people carry
    flags - to promote a movement they think positive and
    to gain social acceptance in it. Identity-formation is
    a *result* not a cause of this.

    So, am I wrong? Is identity formation a result or a
    cause of activity?


-- ------------------------------------------------------------
    Andy Blunden
    http://home.mira.net/~andy <http://home.mira.net/%7Eandy>