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Mean Girls; in a Sociological Perspective - Movie Review

Essay by   •  July 14, 2011  •  Book/Movie Report  •  1,737 Words (7 Pages)  •  11,126 Views

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In reality, the movie 'Mean Girls' is a poorly thrown together, sorry excuse for a display of high school cliques. No matter how ridiculous it portrays the groups, however, the sociological value of it is correct to a 'tee'. In high schools these days, teenagers, especially girls, are rude, cruel, and approval seeking of their peers. Racial issues will always be present in high schools whether it be as cruel as stereotypes or as beneficial as associating race with intelligence. Homosexuals are viewed as almost taboo no matter how many movements have recently taken place for the legalization of marriage vows and acceptance of them. Social norms are displayed differently in different parts of the world, and some acceptable things in one culture just aren't in another. And worst of all possibly, adults have been out of the scene for years and with times constantly changing they have no grasp on their children's attitudes or actions no matter how similar they were back in their day.

High school females are some of the cruelest, royalty among peer seeking "slutbags" according to Janis Ian and Damian, Cady Heron's first acquaintances in her new school. All girls look up to the vicious, popular girls in high school for intimidation purposes. These "plastics" as they are called are teen girl royalty. All girls want to be like them because they are so widely known and praised for how cool they are, they're rich and beautiful, yet, the population equivalent social status girls know they are downright cruel and mean. The "plastics" ascribed accomplishments are what every girl concerned with materialism yearns for at such a young age. A Lexus, insured hair and car commercials are some of the "plastics" accomplishments their parents can afford to give them at this age. When materialism is such a big concern among girls at sixteen, attention is given for all the wrong reasons. The girls that look up to these other females just wish they would be able to have things that draw individual attention to themselves. Jealousy and popularity for materialistic reasons are real sociological issues among young high school girls and its displayed in several events throughout the film. These events include when Regina George, "the queen bee", is hit by a bus; the rest of the girls fake sympathy in hopes of being accepted into her lifestyle and circle someday by sending her dozens and dozens of get well soon presents. Regina George also creates a jealousy streak in her newly accepted groupie Cady Heron when she dangles the most gorgeous, popularity-equivalence of a boyfriend in front of the "socially-retarded" red-head. Regina also only becomes friends with Cady because she sees her as a possible beauty threat. Being popular is all Regina's concerned about and she'll be damned if a prettier girl comes along and steals the spotlight from her so the initiation into "the plastics" begins.

Racial stereotyping may not be as cruel as it was in the 1960's anymore but it still exists. Towards the beginning of the movie, Cady Heron is introduced by the principal to her first class of the day as a new student. The principal also adds that she is joining the school all the way from Africa. Ms. Norbury welcomes the token "black girl" in the class instead of Lindsay Lohan, the actual Cady Heron. The African American girl takes offense to the comment and rudely states back, "I'm from Michigan". Ms. Norbury apologizes and looks towards the red-haired freckle faced girl afterward with a look of amazement on her face most likely thinking to herself how is this Irish in appearance, red-haired, freckle faced girl from Africa of all places and why is she in my classroom. Again in the lunch room, Cady Heron tries to speak to a lunch table of African Americans assuming they'd be the same as the kids she knew when she resided in Africa because their skin color was dark. She says the equivalence of "hello" to them in African and receives an odd look from the entire table for her greeting. She realizes then this high school isn't Africa, nor would every thing be the same as it was once upon a time.

Homosexuals will never be totally accepted by the entire world. Conservative and close-minded individuals will always be present. Also in the beginning of the movie, five young children display a characteristic of conservatism. Most likely derived and mimicked from their parent's beliefs and ideals, one of the small boys says, "...and on the third day, God created the Remington full action rifle, so that man could fight off the dinosaurs and the homosexuals." All of his siblings then say, "Amen", in agreement. Obviously the kids are from the deep South; it can be implied by their accents. In the South, conservatism is about as common as wearing socks. This is a folkway, however, and not saying everyone wears socks but most people do. These children are a perfect example of the Social Interaction Theory that states deviant behavior is learned, not ascribed at birth.

Damian is also portrayed as the typical "gay guy" in the film. He is hurt by the fact he'll never win spring fling queen against Regina George and enjoys the color pink. He totes a token feminine accent throughout the entire movie. Damian also uses the female bathroom in



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