Identity

by admin

With the onslaught of stimulus baked into modern life, the constant persuasion of the public dialogue and the desire of each one of us to assess others for their fitness in our tribe, we experience constant pressure on our identity.

The work of becoming an adult in modern America is to integrate identity into action, to be able to present a cohesive and resilient self in every situation, public or private.

In the past, a reliable short-hand existed to help communicate or uncover identity: ethnicity, family, place, education, interests. These pieces of information, combined with cultural reference points and personal experience, gave one a certain degree of comfort that the subject would behave, in different circumstances, in certain predictable ways.

Those cues are not as useful in determining the nature of the person any longer. The story of the experience, if told honestly, is the best sense of the person. “Tell me the story of how you arrived here in the way that will best help me understand who you are” is the lost effective way to understand.

And then the question is how resilient and integrated is the identity. For that is the key question we need to know about the people we give our trust to.

That is the question asked of Obama, in re campaign and after. That is what some people intuitively grasped for and others could not possibly trust.

That is the post-modern expression of the self.

— Post From My iPhone