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Word Count: 2,065
Constructing identity in todays media saturated world is not an easy task For with a simple flip of the television channel or a turn of a magazine page there at our disposal is a vast array of possible identity models In modern society identity is perpetually unstable it must be chosen created and constructed with reference to unavoidable surrounding media culture Considering the frameworks surrounding the construction of identity by theorists including Louis Althusser and Anthony Giddens this essay will argue that identity is a social construction governed primarily by the contemporary media it is created in relation to others and is fluid not fixed thus it is continually being altered in order to keep up with the changing society An individuals identity is shaped by society in which media plays a predominant role There is a mutually interactive relationship between the subject human agents and the object the conditions of their existence Fiske distinguishes the subject be claiming the individual is produced by nature but the subject by culture Theories of the individual concentrate on differences between people and explain these differences as natural According to Marxist theorists individuals are constituted as the possessors of positions through the effects of social relations Alternatively theories of the subject concentrate on peoples common experiences in society through watching television reading the newspaper or surfing the internet It is the most important way of distinguishing who we are Thus subject identity is a social construction not a natural one When we engage with the media we act and are acted upon use and are used by the system French Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser rejected the idea of the Cartesian Self developed by Descartes a notion of the individual as a self-conscious autonomous being whose actions are explained in terms of the individual being in charge of ones self Instead Althusser introduced the concept of a mechanism of interpellation where by subjects are constituted as
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