4 Reflecting on one's own identity
This audio clip explores the way in which language, ethnicity and religion can affect an individual's sense of identity.
The first three speakers all work in North Wales, where language is a significant issue. The final two speakers, who are both social workers with an adoptive agency, reflect on the complexities of their own ethnic and religious identities.
Before you listen to the clip, think about the factors that you consider to have been most significant in the development of your own identity.
As you listen to the clip, make some notes on the different speakers' sense of belonging. When you have listened to the clip, compare these with notes you have made about yourself.
Transcript: Reflecting on one's own identity
You may have beeen struck by the range and complexity of the feelings expressed by the speakers in this clip. Four of the five speakers are white, and one is black. Two of the Welsh-based speakers describe different degrees of discomfort about the extent to which they belong to, or are accepted by, the communities in which they work. The last speaker, of Irish descent, is very definite that she is not English, but is unsure of belonging in Ireland either. The term ‘British’ appears to be a useful compromise for her. The black speaker distinguishes between describing herself as Guyanese when she is in Britain, and as British, when she is abroad. You may have thought about how these social workers live out different identities in different aspects of their lives.