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In defense of masks by Kenneth Gergen - Essay Example

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Summary
Kenneth Gergen introduces his article by stating that it is poor psychology to think that human beings can find a single basic self to which they can be true. He opposes the thinking of the poet Alexander Pope, sociologist Erving Goffman, and psychologist Erik Erikson. Pope,…
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In defense of masks by Kenneth Gergen

Download file to see previous pages... Gergen is right, it is impossible to live through life without putting on or developing masks. Masks are a vital part of human society. Masks act as a source of fostering relationships and understandability between various groups in the society.
People portray different forms of their real selves. They adorn masks to masks to achieve various objectives in their lives, but it is a fake characterization of their true beliefs and attitudes of a person. Everybody has a motivation towards hiding their identities. Whether it is to get accepted, loved, ignored, inflict fear or hide from shame. This urge to wear masks is true to human form. The urge for survival in a tough and competitive world makes people to act in a manner that is not true to self. For example, it is common for an employee to appear subtle in front of his/her boss just to appease them and look well-mannered or cultured. The employee may in actual sense not be cultured or well-mannered. He or she may be a loudmouth or someone that ridicules fellow coworkers at the workplace. But because the employee is in the presence of their boss and he or she hopes to get noticed for a promotion or favor, they hide their true identity in front of the boss. The boss would thus pick up a fake attitude or behavior from the employee. The motivation to get promoted or noticed makes the employee to wear a mask that hides their real identity.
The society has also forced human beings to wear masks. Societal pressures make people to act in ways that are not true to their selves. In a world that is full of standards and demands, people act to please others and not themselves (Gergen 138). Friends, enemies, and relatives may force individuals to behave in certain ways. Present day society is riddled with popular culture in all forms of media. One may be categorized as ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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