Friday, July 6, 2012

12. Identity: A Conflict Case 3

             Here is a conflict story between two people who are working in the same company. One of them is a worker, and the other is a manager and is a supervisor of him. Let’s say, Tom for worker and Jason for the manager. The relationship between Tom and Jason were not bad. One day, Jason blamed Tom for putting Tom’s favorite figure on the desk in the office. Jason said, “This figure is not appropriate to have because you are mature adult.” This trivial phrase dramatically changed their relationship. For Jason, this figure was valueless whereas this figure was one of the significant symbols which embody Tom’s value. Thus, it was unacceptable violation for Tom to be blamed for having this figure and he might feel disrespect from Jason. Tom started having antagonistic attitudes because of this unacceptable attack from Jason afterwards. Jason noticed this attitudinal change, although he did not notice the reason. Tom became less conscientious for working and he felt uneasiness in seeing Jason’s face. Tom still puts his favorite figure on the desk. 
              I will discuss not the figure but identity. I wonder if the figure for him may be the idle for religion. If it is true, then it can be inappropriate to bring such religious and holly items in the office. A lot of company prohibit bringing the religious items, although Tom’s favorite figure are a clearly religious item or not.
              Alternative interpretation is that it can be a star for Tom but not religious item. The constitution protects the freedom of speech, thoughts and religion. If this alternative interpretation is true, it can argue that Jason’s behavior can be considered to harm this freedom.
              Now, I do not argue the questions: who should be judge and how should the judge evaluate specific value. Instead, I will answer the question why this situation is caused. It is reasonable to think that judgments are unavoidable and the judge must be human beings. In the case argued above, it is not required to judge and no possibility to be judged. In many cases, I assume that the conflicts are usually not judged, and are invisible or covered up. I think that people initially assert their situation that they are injured their identity when they felt disrespect, disgrace and when they guess its reason.
              Identity is unique. Not a few cases are invisible from others. People feel their identity when they are affiliated with specific social and cultural groups. Family, the place where people were born, school, a company, a club, a party, a group with sharing specific interests, a religious group, social activist party, a political party, a social position, a career, generation, ethnicity, nation, and specific historical views, all of them can be the origin of the identity. If people analyze the identity of themselves or others, then they can notice that the strength differences among demographic characters, or notice that some characters are not consciously recognized, or notice the distorted and complicated figures of identity.
              Identity is an extension of social and cultural aspects of self-recognition. Therefore, people can feel pride, self-awareness, responsibility for the group or notions which can produce solidarity with them. Identity—these characteristics produced by the solidarity with specific group or notions—must not be disproved or disrespected. Rather it must be natural and sound, although it depends on the characteristics of the group or notion.
              Considering the case of a baseball game, a pitcher threw a ball at the middle of high where an idle batter of a pitcher can easily hit a homerun, without thinking a team. This case must be criticized. If he exposed this thought, he could be expelled from a team, and no team could recruit him. A game exists when the players recognize their identity each other. If this game is inside of the civilization, then there must be respect each other. It is, however, in real world, not a few coaches told players that they should have antagonistic mind as if they were killing the members of the other team. It did not violate the law, so it can be protected due to the right of freedom of speech. It is free to do so, however, not a few people think it is immoral.
              Some people might feel their school as their identity. There are many people who graduated from the famous institutions take a pride of their educated school, even though they do not explicitly say so. Yet, I do not understand how to evaluate such people who graduated the most prestigious schools and do not make any contributions for the academia or the society. I highly expect that they would make a contribution not to devaluate their institution, although those people who think as I thought are minority.
              Thanks to the fame of the school, it is nothing more than the psychological effects to believe exaggerated self. Nevertheless, people are prone to have overestimated images of them. For instance, I heard many cases that corporations recruit people as executives those who graduated the most prestigious institutions, even though just appeal their company to the public. One professor said that the purpose of the university is to sale the name and fame to students. It is true because it is impossible to obtain the brand of the most prestigious school if the individual do not graduate from that school.
              Identity has both positive and negative meanings. On the one hand, it can facilitate and promote the activation and development of a specific group. On the other hand, it can also provide the cause and reason of conflicts with people. Considering its effect to individuals, it can be true that excessive and exaggerated identity can cause satisfaction and pleasure. This, however, can also make people machine that can be functioned as a part of the organization. This is the case that individual lose their identity. Yet, someone might justify this situation as right way of life not as a result of depraved identity. Revaluation of self-identity and imagining others identity must be valuable in order to live with furthering the understanding of human nature and the society.

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