The traditional Maori culture has various roles and a hierarchical structure of learning -- Pai's circumstances break that role, not only for her character, but in asking other members of the village to do so as well (Vygotsky). Similarly, Bronfenbrenner's "Ecological" Theory takes the environment of the learner and moves outward -- from home to community to government to society to time. In the case of Pai; it was the constant interaction between the micro- and macro-ecological forces -- the movement both inward and outward, that eventually allowed her to transcend the structures of culture and find her own pathway. The closer the development towards the inner circle, the more traditional the tribe seemed to need to hold onto the past -- to organize their own way of being. This was partially to protect (Bronfenbrenner). Pai's father, Porourangi, lacks trust in his own culture but disdains tradition because he does not seem to fit in. It is the psycho-social growth through stages, almost with the loss of Pai's life, that changes these characters and their ability to see clearly how tradition (the old ways) may be modified through circumstance and a mystical calling, not defined by internal or external structure (Erik Erikson).
However, when looking at the story based on traditional and modern values, we can also see that there is a transition, a development if you will, that moves from birth through learning and adolescence to old age -- not just chronological, but in wisdom and social function. Pai, for instance, moves through stages like Erik Erickson's psycho-social template by loving and trusting unquestiongly, but is confused by the mixed messages she receives. When she finally realizes it is because of her gender, she is even more confused because there is something pulling at her -- something at once beyond the traditional but not really modern since it comes from a mystical past. Similarly, Grandfather Koro grows to learn that traditional values simply mean accepted values, and without constantly questioning and reevaluating those values, they mean nothing. Nanny Flowers, the traditional Earth Mother, thinks very little about tradition, but is just as happy changing with the flow of events. Uncle Rawiri, although grounded in tradition, still breaks to teach Pai -- ironically, breaking tradition in ...
The story is a wonderful example of magical realism; much like the Milagro Beanfield War or Like Water for Chocholate. For the contemporary reader, magical realism is a genre in which magical, or some would say illogical, scenarios and events appear in a normal setting. The power of this genre seems to be the juxtaposition of the two elements -- magic and realism -- in that in an everyday, somewhat banal, setting; one does not really expect magic, the unexpected, the delightful, to happen without a logical explanation. Contrary to many critical explanations, the basic idea of this juxtaposition is not simply to entertain, but as a genre to provide a greater insight into the possibilities of both the human and divine -- of the belief that not everything that happens can, or should, be explained rationally and that as advanced a being as we are, there are still things to learn about the universe. Witness a famous Arthur C. Clarke's "Third Law" -- "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." Pai's story is part of the archetypal here's epic journey; through trials, doubts, and tribulations; all to provide that they are worthy. In this case, though, it was not just Pai learning that she was worthy of becoming Koro's successor; it was her father's learning that he had a place within the tribe, her Uncle understanding his role, and the combination of traditional values and sternness of Koro with the enveloping love of Nanny Flowers that helped Pai take their teachings, combine with her own innate gifts, and become truly special.
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Pai's father, Porourangi, lacks trust in his own culture but disdains tradition because he does not seem to fit in. It is the psycho-social growth through stages, almost with the loss of Pai's life, that changes these characters and their ability to see clearly how tradition (the old ways) may be modified through circumstance and a mystical calling, not defined by internal or external structure (Erik Erikson).
Erik Erikson: The Eight Stages of Development Biography Although not as famous as Sigmund Freud, Erik Erikson was no less influential in the development of 20th century psychology. Like Freud, Erikson viewed human beings as developing through a series of 'stages,' but he broke with Freud in terms of his emphasis on social development, versus sexual development. Erikson was the first major theorist to question Freud's emphasis on the Oedipus Complex and
Erik Erikson a summary of biographical information about the psychologist Erik Erikson The work of Erik Erikson is like that of Freud it touches upon the individual growth but while Freud analyzed himself, and stated the growth in terms of the very infant, after which he assumed that the mind does not adapt or grow, in the sense of the personality, except ego, though himself an ego psychologist, Erik's works are different
I had to learn that I couldn't be good at everything naturally. I learned that if I wanted to be better at a skill, there were things at which I had to work. Identity v. Role Confusion Erikson's fifth stage of psychosocial development, Identity v. Role Confusion, is one I remember very clearly. As a typical teenager, I struggled to "find myself." There were so many identities out there to choose
Franz and White (1985) argue that while Erikson's stages are generally sound, they could be made stronger by a discussion of the underlying process of interpersonal attachment. They argue that the tension of intimacy vs. isolation do not adequately account for how males and females form interpersonal attachments. The writers are clear, however, that these shortcomings do not invalidate Erikson's theory. Instead, they are looking for ways in which his theory could
Of course, not every individual resolves all of these conflicts successfully. "Erikson is not explicit but presumably assumes character types comprised of combinations of the sets of traits related to the eight stages of development. Whenever a fixation occurs, it is likely to jeopardize sound development in subsequent stages as well [Erikson said] -- 'failure is cumulative'" ("Erik Homburg Erikson,"2008). Influences The era when Erikson developed his theory of development was
Erik Erikson has emerged as one of the most highly regarded contemporary psychoanalytic theorists and his psychosocial stages of development have attracted attention from many personality researchers who seek to explain personality development across the entire span of a person's life (Crain, 2011). Erikson's eight stages of psychosocial development are still taught in college psychology courses, human development courses, and are referred to in developmental research. Nonetheless, there have been