Introduction The film, Mean Girls, a 2004 American teen comedy, focuses on female high school social “cliques” and their effects. In doing so, the movie brings up various topics of sociological relevance, with connections to two of the main topics discussed in the first semester of this course. This film’s characters and world tie into modern socialization and gender issues, giving sociologists a satirical in-depth view of the social hierarchy present in today’s youth—particularly concentrated in young female teenagers. The movie addresses gender stereotypes, socialization and assimilation into a complex high school environment, self-fulfilling prophecy, and various other concepts important to the development of a social self for teens in the …show more content…
The film displays these issues in order to satirize them, and therefore, certain behaviour may be exaggerated to make it more obvious for the audience. As can be seen from the Plastics’ “rules”, there is a common theme present in what the “popular” girls hold valuable. From the iconic quote of “on Wednesdays, we wear pink”, to downright odd restrictions such as “we only wear jeans or trackpants on Fridays” (Michaels & Waters, 2004), the prevalent thing these well-liked, “flawless” girls seem to be concerned about is appearance. Intelligence is undesirable and unneeded in order to stand out and rule in this teenage social hierarchy. For example, when Cady says she wants to join the Mathletes, both Regina and Damien—who have very different personalities—say that it would be “social suicide” (Michaels & Waters, 2004). This suggests that no matter who it is in the film, they seem to have a common understanding that intelligence is not what makes a girl “attractive”. This is further demonstrated when Cady feels the need to act like she is bad at math in …show more content…
Words such as “slut” and “whore” are thrown around in the movie as insults towards girls in the Burn Book (Michaels & Waters, 2004). As for sexualization in the media, it shows the shockingly young age at which girls in today’s society are being exposed to this. For example, Regina’s little sister, who looks like she is in elementary school at most, is copying a dance from a censored music video featuring the song Milkshake by Kelis. The specific lyrics featured in the movie are “my milkshake brings all the boys to the yard/damn right, they’re better than yours”. The milkshake stands for a woman’s sex appeal. From a sociological standpoint, today’s media’s sexualization of females is spreading like wildfire, and making this type of perception into a norm—the idea that women should feel the need to act “sexy” in order to attract
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She employs many literary devices that support her specific claim in this passage as well as she provides many clear examples of how stereotypes have shaped young girls’ lives throughout the book. Through these examples she succeeds to use them as evidence so the audience does not conform to
The two compiled a map of North Shore High and how Cady will survive it. A big part of the map was the cafeteria and where all the different cliques sat. Cady was warned about a certain clique called “the Plastics”, she was told they are the worst people she would ever meet. The Plastics are the popular clique at Cady’s new
When the racial tension that develops throughout the narrative finally erupts [in a sequence beginning at 1:29:04], Tina is unsurprisingly absent, attesting hooks’ summation that “the presence of black women in the film take the heat off and replace it with erotic play”. Nevertheless, though outnumbered by ten men, a secondary female character, Ella (Christa Rivers), is present at Sal’s as the conflict unfolds. Until this point, Ella serves a deindividuated roll as a member of a collective featuring Cee (Martin Lawrence), Punchy (Leonard Thomas) and Ahmad (Steve White) that sees her repeatedly belittle. Lacking the autonomy to challenge the behaviour of her peers, Ella thus shares in their actions and mannerisms upon entry to Sal’s, particularly by castigating Mookie for his refusal to allow them into the building [1:29:17].
Betty mentions that more than style preferences, the girl’s behavior represented group membership for them. In other words, each group was aware that their style was in opposition and try to maintain their symbolic boundaries as an important tool for distinction. Most important, Bettie points out that their style preferences became to represent a categorical definition for the school personal. This category being the assumption that the preps were innocent and pure, while las chicas mature and low class. Thus, Betty claims that rather of seeing their style as markers of class distinction, the school personal saw las chicas’s performance as evidence of their heterosexual interest.
The film Mean Girls, produced by Lorne Michaels and directed by Mark Waters in 2004 focuses on a teenage girl, Cady Heron, who experiences the drastic change of living and being home schooled in Africa to moving to America and attending a regular high school. While attempting to sabotage the plastics, the girls who hold the most popularity in the school, Cady unknowingly turns into one of them, leaving aspects of her old personality behind. By analyzing the film through sociological perspectives, the deeper meaning of the film can be revealed. Socialization Socialization is the process of connecting individuals to their community allowing individuals to experience new attitudes and perspectives.
essica, I totally agree that in the movie, Mean Girls, conformity is expressed. Do you agree that conformity is also very popular in not only Mean Girls, but in high schools today? Young high school girls and boys that are undecided about what they want to be, who they are, and wonder how to fit in, conform to fit in with who they think that they want to become. In a way this is not good because being someone who you really aren’t doesn’t allow you to express your true inner self. It's better to be the leader rather than a follower.
Caty begins the movie with a real genuine friendship with Janis and Damien, two individuals who struggled with popularity because they were considered the “outside” group. However, the popular girls, infamously called the “Plastics” try to recruit Caty into their popular group, but only because she is considered one of the prettier girls in the school. The ring leader, Regina George, of the Plastics is the most popular girl in school who is really hated by alot of peers because of her horrible attitude and how she
“The plastics” were the leading group of the school, consisting of three popular, attractive girls, Regina, the leader of the group and two other girls, Karen, and Gretchen. “The Plastics” then scouted Cady since she had been attractive, and got the attention of popular boys, in which Janis and Damien originally supported in order to manipulate and plan to destroy “the plastics” through Cady. Cady’s exploration with social psychology is shown through her being unaware of everything at her new high school; social psychology concepts that are shown throughout this storyline are implicit personality theory, norms and group schemas, gender roles. Implicit personality theory is the inference of co-occurrence of personality traits based on another personality trait. This can be shown by the halo effect, where one infers that someone is generally good based on a few RUNNING
Youth culture can pertain to interests in styles, music, clothes and sports. It also pertains to behaviours, beliefs, and vocabulary; this refers to the ways that teenagers conduct their lives. The concept behind youth culture is that adolescents are a subculture with norms, morals, behaviours and values that differ from the main culture of older generations within society. For instance, young men and women, teenagers in this case, are mostly represented as unpredictable and not easy to understand. In the film, Mean Girls directed by Mark Waters (2004), adolescents are represented as bullies, who use manipulation to achieve what they want and are two-faced with the people around them; they are constantly stereotyped as a high social group like the plastics and a low social group like the mathletes; also they are presented as young people that fall under peer pressure, and are overly concerned about their appearance and about being socially accepted.
All of a sudden, I found myself thinking sociologically when I was watching the movie “Mean Girls,” because it reminded me of the cliques and peer groups that were in my old high school. The movie is about a teenage girl who ends up becoming a part of this clique full of mean girls and after an incident she sets out to try and ruin the leader of the clique’s life. It was the cliques and peer groups that made me start thinking sociologically, because it made me look back and see how much I have changed since I came to the University of Kentucky, and left my old clique or peer group behind. In my sociology class I learned that a peer group is a “group of individuals who are often around the same age and are linked by common interests and orientations.”
It centers on females and how they act at that certain age. The four mean girls, Regina George, Gretchen Wieners, Karen Smith and Cady Heron represent the stereotypes of the popular girls of high school. The role of gender plays an important role in the movie. The movie discusses the aspects of how a “typical” teenage girl should be, in order for her to fit in.
The movie Mean Girls is a perfect example of many social-psychological principles. Three of the major principles that are seen in the film include: conformity, in-groups and out-groups and prejudice. Cady Herron, a naïve sixteen-year-old who has been homeschooled her entire life, is forced to start as a junior at North Shore High School because of her family’s job relocation. Throughout the movie, you see Cady struggling to maintain acceptance in the school’s in-group known as The Plastics. The Plastics, who represent popularity, high economic status and the acclaimed standard of beauty, are one of the meanest cliques at North Shore.
Next, many gender and sexual stereotypes are perpetuated in media, through the ways of movies. In fact, the movie Legally Blonde fits under the category of stereotypes exceptionally well, since it shows many stereotypes of women in the society. For instance, there is one scene in the movie, where Warner, the handsome boy is playing football with his friends, and Elle, the dumb blonde sits on the sidelines to study and distract the guys playing as she wears nothing but a sparkly bikini top under a furry shawl on her upper half. This example evidently portrays the serotype of being a blonde dumb. Throughout the movie “Legally Blonde” Elle is shown as a material sorority girl, who is a duplicate copy of barbie in real life.
Cady has never really had to question her identity because she was homeschooled. She goes through obvious changes after becoming apart of her new group. She insists on working hard to please and be accepted by her intragroup. “Because being with the plastics was like being famous,” Cady thought to herself. Throughout the film Cady has a tussle with her own social identity.
There is no doubt that the film Mean Girls is full of conflict. Director Mark Waters did an excellent job at presenting how conflict can transpire and spread between females. The conflict that occurs in Mean Girls can easily be seen through the main characters Cady and Regina, however, conflict does not only takes place between the two of them but the entire school as well. Conflicts that arise throughout this film can be explained through power and power currencies, conflict styles and tactics, assumptions and triggering events, and forgiveness and reconciliation. Each conflict allows there to be understanding as to why the conflict took place and how it got as destructive as it did.