THE ACQUISITION AND TRANSFORMATION OF IDENTITIES
There are many disparate and carefully segregated or compartmentalized substantive fields within the discipline of sociology that treat issues related to identity, including the sociologies of work and occupations, the family, education, and deviance and criminology. All of these fields deal with questions of identity acquisition and transformation. For example, the "societal reaction" or "labelling" theorists in deviance focus quite specifically on the processes by which identity is bestowed, and H. S. Becker "Becoming a Marijuana User" is one of the relatively early and basic descriptions of the process of an identity shift or transformation as one engages in "deviant" behaviour ( 1953).
The field of ethnic studies also views various questions related to identity as quite central to its substantive and theoretical concerns. Indeed, Tamotsu Shibutani and Kian Kwan argue that "an ethnic group consists of those who conceive of themselves as being alike by virtue of their common ancestry, real or fictitious, and who are so regarded by others" ( 1965: 47, emphasis added). The conditions that facilitate or hinder the emergence of ethnic identity are a common theme of much of the current literature in this field (see, for example, Yancey, Ericksen, and Juliani, 1976.)
While one could probably argue that questions related to identity are found in every subfield in the discipline, for those mentioned this