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The Effect of the Environment on Our Personal Development

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Nature is referring to the overall genes, instincts and physical features that make us who we are. Nurture refers to our social hierarchy, environment, race and financial well-being. Nature can cause specific learning disabilities like mental retardation, schizophrenia and autism. Being nurtured in a specific way, such as being beaten by your parents’ every day or verbally abused can cause depression, schizophrenia and in turn causing you to be a social outcast.

This argument is settled simply, if you believe your personality develops and can change, you believe that being nurtured in a specific way affects your behavior. If you believe you have a personality that was a trait of your parents that you acquired or your personality is created by your DNA you take the side that nature affects your behavior. Based on different movies, books or articles I’ve read and watched I firmly believe we are a product of our setting and our genetics only affects our physical features and mental processing skills. I believe we’re a product of our own environment therefore I am on the nurture side of this argument. In my opinion, I believe social interactions are the cause of behaviors. For example, say for instance, you were being jumped by two people, a lot scientist argue adrenaline and the fight or flight factor, but your social interactions will determine if you “flight or fight.”

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The young African American man that grew up in southeast DC was most likely brought up to never run from a fight. Although the young African American man that has the same physical features of the first young man but was raised in a predominantly white neighborhood and has never gotten in a fight before would most likely run away. Proving my point that your environment affects your decisions even in instinct dependent situations. Although I’m on the nurture side I understand why some scientists take the side of nature. Generally, we as humans learn new things just about every day.

As babies when we came in to the world out our mother’s womb, we begin to learn and adapt to our environment that is completely different from our mother’s stomach. We learn who’s safe to be around and who maybe a threat. Although our home environment influences who we are outside. Like the saying “everything starts at home.” According to “The Real World, An Introduction to Sociology by Kerry Ferris and Jill Stein” Both arguments are right. “…nature plays a role in who we are. For example research shows that high levels of testosterone contribute to stereotypically masculine traits such as aggressiveness and competitiveness. However it is also true that facing a competitive challenge (such as a baseball game) causes testosterone levels to rise. I agree with the previous statement but it can be argued that we are competitive based on societal systematic culture. If there were no prizes, bragging rights, or “popularity”, it can be argued that there won’t be a level competitiveness that we see culturally today.


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