The Birth Certificate: Shaping Identity in an Age of Documentation
William Staples, KU Professor of Sociology
A birth certificate is a credential that is often taken for granted until it is required. It serves as proof of one's age or citizenship; and it is a requirement in order to be adopted, to go to school, to get a driver's license or a passport, to marry, to inherit property, and to be elected to office. But in helping us prove who we are, this document also helps define who we are; it has been involved, at various times and places, in the social construction of our sex, race/ethnicity, nationality, and parental lineage. This discussion will explore the production of identification as a method of governing and the formation of identity as a byproduct of such governance.
The Idea Café is intended to elicit energetic exchanges between attendees in response to the speaker's introduction.
Of interest to:
Data & Democracy, Idea Café