Self Identity Essay

  • Length: 4 pages
  • Sources: 4
  • Subject: Sociology - Race
  • Type: Essay
  • Paper: #34366673

Excerpt from Essay :

Cheesman (2002) conducted a study on Karen identity in the Union of Myanmar with regards to historical and social conditions. The study found that Karen identity is a relatively difficult identity because individuals from this ethnic background do not have a common language, material attributes, religion and culture. While most of the existing assessments of this ethnic identity have been carried out in Thailand, it is largely influenced by historical and social conditions in the Union of Myanmar. Based on a review of contemporary Myanmar, people of Karen identity are seemingly virtuous, illiterate (uneducated), and oppressed. Many aspects relating to this identity appear to emphasize inferiority and subordination mostly because of mythology and modifications by the elite. Similar to the Union of Myanmar, Karen identity was brought by political dynamics and created by elite groups in the society.

The information provided in the article is accurate with regards to the role historical and social conditions in the Union of Myanmar played in the creation of this ethnic identity. This article provides significant insights regarding Karen identity that can be utilized in social work practice. In social work practice, the information provided in the article helps in understanding the social conditions that influence how such individuals are treated. Moreover, it provides a basis for understanding the characteristics of an individual with this identity, which is a crucial aspect in social work practice. According to this study, identity is formed based on the social and historical forces surrounding a group of people. The social and historical forces lead to the creation of a culture, which in turn becomes a definitive feature of a group of people. I usually thought that my identity is formed by biological factors but this article has helped me understand the role social factors play in this target='_blank' href=''>process. As a Karen ethnic in the United States, this article helps me understand people's perceptions about me based on the conditions in Myanmar.

South (2007) conducted a research on the problem of diversity with regards to Karen nationalist communities. The study focused on evaluating how different people in and from Burma have marshaled political support towards the opposing ideas of Karen ethno-nationalism since the colonial period. One of the groups that have played a major role in this advocacy is Christian elites who have sought to establish the concept of a homogenous Karen identity in a society that continues to be characterized by increased diversity. Even though these efforts have been embraced and legitimized by outsiders, establishing Karen unity within this region has become divisive in practice and been the source of ethnic conflicts in Burma. Consequently, numerous civil society networks and organizations within and outside Karen ethnicity have emerged in recent years to promote unity in diversity.

The information provided in the article accurate as shown in recent ethnic conflicts in the Union of Myanmar relating to promotion national unity. Karens have experienced tremendous challenges for recognition in this region while attempts towards unity have been largely divisive. This information is important in social work practice with regards to understanding the challenges experienced by Karens with regards to having a sense of national belonging. When utilized in social work practice, information from this article is vital towards enhancing the self-esteem and self-determination of clients from this ethnic background. This study helps me to understand the ethnic conflicts that have characterized national unity attempts in Burma and Myanmar. This article has also highlighted the lack of specific characteristics that define Karen ethnic background as a single identity. While I am of Karen ethnic background, I do not understand the specific religion, cultural, and material…

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"Self Identity" (2017, January 29) Retrieved October 25, 2020, from

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"Self Identity", 29 January 2017, Accessed.25 October. 2020,