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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The Interplay of Multiple Identities of Individuals Across Multiple Domains

  • Author(s): Dissanayake, Malathie P
  • McConatha, Jasmin T
  • et al.

The current study explores multiple identities of individuals, particularly youth, and the importance as well as interrelations of those identities in particular social domains in Sri Lankan society. Participants consisted of 96 Sri Lankans live in Sri Lanka. Participants completed seven self-statements (who am I), and closed ended questions, regarding five major identities: nationality, religion, ethnicity, caste, and occupation (university student). Explanations of the self-statements, analyzed by using a fourfold coding scheme, indicated that university student status is the most common social attribute among other social attributes in self-interpretations of individuals. Religion and nationality were second and third most common social attributes whereas caste was the least common. This is consistent with results of the importance of social identities. The importance of each social identity was different when it associated with different social domains, depending on how individuals value their social identities in particular social relations.

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