Identity Lifestylers, Commuters, and Integrators

Essay. Consider Wayne Brekhus' model of identity maintenance as articulated in Peakcocks, Chameleons, and Centaurs. He describes three "ideal typical" modes of doing identity: lifestyler, commuter, and integrator.

Your task is to select some identity with which you are familiar (we'd like you to be able to draw on personal experience or things you have observed) and to describe how it might be done by a lifestyler, a commuter, and an integrator.

You should use this as an opportunity to demonstrate your grasp of the concepts Brekhus develops (in addition to to the ideal types he talks about, for example, "identity grammar" and "identity ecology" and "lifestyler spaces."

As in any such paper, one way to do this is to use quotes and paraphrases/explications when you introduce a concept and then either precede these or follow them with ethnographic description of something that illustrates the concept.

Length: Try to accomplish this in ~900 to ~1200 words. Document word count under the paper's title.

Format: If you submit electronically, please identify yourself on the paper only with your Mills ID (Boo) number. The file you send, though, MUST have your surname in the filename (e.g., Ryan-SEDL-essay2.docx).

Suggested Approach

  1. Brainstorm identities with which you have some familiarity.
  2. Then, for each, jot some things down that would characterize an identity lifestyler, commuter, and integrator.
  3. Select most promising or interesting case.
  4. Further brainstorm about behaviors and such that fit under each ideal type.
  5. Scan the Brekhus text for other concepts (e.g., spatial) that are relevant to this activity. Create columns for these and brainstorm examples.
  6. Draft essay in terms of concepts/quotes/explications.
  7. Make notes about best examples.
  8. Narrate
  9. Rewrite