Over the years there have been many debates as to whether the way we are is decided before or after birth. Sociologists believe that our up bringing and our environment shape the person we are, whereas Biologists believe that the way we are is decided by our genetic structure. But which is right? In some case studies, which we looked at in class, it was very easy to tell which group they supported in others it was not.
For example, ‘The Portuguese chicken girl. This girl was born to a mentally unstable rural worker and soon after she was born she was left in the chicken coop. She was fed bits of bread and shared the chicken feed with the fowl. This is all she knew. The neighbours had gossiped for years but had never taken any action, as they did not want to meddle in other people’s family matters. When she finally got the help she needed the doctors found that she could not speak or feed herself, unless you call scraping food in to her mouth with her hands and feet feeding herself.
She had, had no human contact for the first few years of her life. She had not been nurtured and looked after the way children should be. This obviously supports the Sociologists. There was another case, which supported the Biologists; it was about twin brothers separated at birth. They grew up, both married women a called Linda, both got divorced and married women called Betty, both had a son, One called James Allan, the other James Alan, both had a dog called toy and both went on holiday to the same little beach in Florida.
Is this a coincidence or can it be explained scientifically? Sociologists would say it was sheer coincidence. I believe that both parties are right. Our physical appearance is decided before birth, it’s in our genes, but the type of person we are is decided after birth, by the way we are brought up, the environment we live in. Even the people we meet have an influence on our personality. So in conclusion I would like to say that I feel that our genes and our environment effect the person that we turn out to be in later life.