What is Identity?

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What is Identity?
Identity is a term that can be defined in so many different ways but it basically points to the characteristics of a particular subject that is considered its own. When referring to persons, identity is what makes somebody different from the rest of the population. It involves a person’s unique qualities and characteristics that only he/she can claim. These personal qualities may be physical, behavioral, or even intellectual. A person’s identity is generally what defines him/her as a person.

In the field of philosophy, identity points to some relation that each particular thing has which happens to apply only to itself. If this particular thing has qualities or attributes that are shared with others, then these qualities do not merit the thing’s identity. Identity in this concept fully pertains to some attribute that one thing can fully own by itself.

A basic concept of identity is in an individual’s personal birth information. To identify one person from the other, the world has created a system requiring people to have individual names and accompanying details at the time when one is born. Most countries have laws that involve the proper naming of newborns based on the names of the parents. In this way, a newborn baby can be identified from other babies. With unique names, a baby’s identity is set early on in his/her life. Not to mention that each of the newborn babies will go on to have their own behavioral and physical qualities.

Identities can also be applied to a group of people or to an organization or company. When we speak of identity in these terms, it refers to the collective characteristic and attribute of a particular group or organization. Like in the case of a popular softdrink maker, people around the world has identified with this brand as beverage and/or soda company. Being a softdrinks brand is the identity of this large company. And this perception on them is what makes a large company stand out from the rest and have its identity recognized by most people.

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