Indoctrination as a result of "cultural imprinting"
The term & quot; cultural imprinting & quot; suggests a similar, noticed by K. Lorentz in chicks, the imprinting of cultural samples by the person in the process of education. This term is conditional, under it, in this context, it is necessary to understand a special variant of uncritical appropriation of group values (indoctrination), manifested in a person at the time of the formation of consciousness. It is a question of special sensitive periods of childhood, when people form group loyalty and thus they become very resistant to the formation of alternative fidelity in later life. Cultural imprinting does not involve violence. It requires only a minimal impact of the initiating stimulus during a sensitive period. By absorbing certain truths at an early age, people often remain their followers for many years.
The most striking example of the "cultural imprinting" - strong affiliated ties, usually arising within the family. As a result of the mechanism of cultural imprinting, the adopted child, developing in the family of foster parents, they will be considered "true parents". Subsequent (possible) acquaintance with & quot; biological parents & quot; can bring this child to a serious psychological crisis.
Obviously, and it is only natural that generic affiliation can be formed in a manner similar to imprinting. But a legitimate question arises: can loyalty be formed in the same way for larger groups? On him, despite the protests of a number of ethologists (F. Salter, etc.), you can answer in the affirmative. An illustration of the indoctrination resulting from the "cultural imprinting" can be education in the spirit of certain socio-cultural traditions. It is a question of special traditions, within the framework of which the personality education usually takes place: ethnic, ideological, religious, class, etc.
For example, children born and educated among adults professing this or that religion, who have adopted this or that ideology, assign the dogmas of this religion or ideology. And it happens most often without coercion, deception and violence. & quot; Agents of influence & quot; in this case, the closest people, thanks to which the child enters the culture, act.
For example, children born and raised in the Soviet Union, from an early age, were brought up in the spirit of communist ideology. This ideology was not and could not be their own political choice, they chose it for them, but growing up in this, the child, in addition to his own desire, appropriated these ideas and ideas (I emphasize - with varying degrees of depth). It was through their prism that he viewed and evaluated the environment.
It is noteworthy that many dissidents admitted that in adolescence and even adolescence they were ardent supporters of communist ideology. And only becoming adults and realizing her "inhumanity", they began to actively fight it. It should be noted here that, as dissidents, these people were often once again indoctrinated. At the level of functioning of the psyche, in many of them nothing has changed, just the doctrines they learned again turned out to be diametrically opposite to the previous ones in content. That is why many Soviet dissidents are so similar in their manners, with those with whom they actively fought. The fact of double standards, often observed by dissidents and human rights defenders, is also explained by indoctrination. They will intensively torpedo power and stir public opinion while upholding sympathetic ideas, and will not pay any attention to gross violations of human rights in other situations.
It is interesting from the point of view of studying the operation of the mechanism of indoctrination, and another fact - children, adolescents and young men who did not express an obvious interest in communist postulates, usually subsequently did not become dissidents and were not very interested in new ideologies that arose on the wave of "democratization" in the 1990s. Probably, here we can observe differences in inclinations and abilities for indoctrination, determined by individual characteristics. The fact that there are individual differences in the ability to indoctrination, there is no doubt, but the process of changing some uncritically shared ideas in the mind of others is likely to be studied experimentally.
Similar phenomena can be observed in the process of formation of ethnic, social and even professional identity, where the mechanism of "cultural imprinting" intensively works in the field of indoctrination.
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