Meaning of Socialization Process
To treat the individual and understand him as a component of society is, first of all, to understand that to be part of that society fully, it is not enough to be born within it, there must be a process of socialization .
Biological birth is not social. Although for a child’s parents the birth has a meaning and for society as well, the newborn has no idea of this, being a biological being marked by instincts.
Babies start their socialization process with their mother . This is the first communication that, to a large extent, will establish the newborn’s bond with the world. The mother is the foundation of the child’s insertion in the social universe. Psychoanalytic studies inform the importance of this relationship for the establishment of behavioral patterns of the child.
Gradually, the child will have to learn codes, rules and communication will take place on another plane. Thus begins a process of education, of learning that will take a long time and that, little by little, will cause feelings to be named and worked according to the actions.
The human being is not born ready for social life; it is born depending on the other: it is a gregarious being, but not a social being. Socialization is a process that involves social institutions such as the family, the school, the Church and the State, among others.
To understand the socialization process is to consider it as something eminently cultural. Although man is endowed with instincts that can punctuate his actions, it is the assimilation of values and rules that provides the beacons for social action and the individual’s belonging to a particular society.
We can say that socialization is a kind of habit constituted by a cultural formation given to a being who was born within a society. It is this habit that will allow you to act in this society.
For the scholar Pierre Bourdieu, who developed the concept of habitus , there is a system of durable dispositions of the individual that defines the process of socialization. This habitus is the result of past social conditions, practices and representations.
The question that arises is: how is this habit built that allows the integration of the individual into society?
Primary and secondary socialization
Researchers in this process usually establish two levels of socialization: primary and secondary.
The primary socialization corresponds to the beginning of the process and is limited to the family and school. Parents, uncles, grandparents and teachers are the ones who pass the first notions of rule, of behavior accepted by society that must be repeated by the child. It can also be said that the mass media and, in particular, television programs currently play an important role in this socialization.
The secondary socialization can occur in the productive universe, as a worker; in the State, as a citizen; in a religious institution, as a faithful etc. This socialization takes place at a different time than the primary one and is generally more institutionally broad.
In both cases, what exists is the internalization of norms, rules of conduct, affirmation of worldviews and possibilities for action that encompass a cultural horizon. Hence we understand that, because social experience is something historical, there are specific standards of conduct for certain societies. For example, elements are present in the formation of an Indian that define a social space different from that developed by an American.
This does not mean to say that there are no conflicts, disagreements, shocks within a given society just because there are shared cultural references, but it can be said that there is a pattern of sociability more or less internalized by the individual that places him as an integral part of this or that society.