COMMENT: Mead is correct in her observation that we all strive to both fit in and be different at the same time. An interesting consequence of this, known as optimal distinctiveness theory, is that we constantly modify our own identity as we move throughout the day. For instance, if you are in Kathmandu you might simply identify as an American, whereas when you return to America you would choose something more specific, say, a doctor. But even further, if you walked into a room full of other American doctors you would immediately make your identity a bit more distinct, introducing yourself as, perhaps, a neuroendocrinologist instead.
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