Question: Explain sociologically how social inequality (in terms of class and/or ethnicity) is constructed and challenged in the film Elysium. In what ways is this piece of popular culture reflective of current Australian society? Introduction Social inequality is resolute through the social structure. It connects all individuals and groups. Elysium shows us the general social mobility in the film and it compares with the American society. It shows that social experiences within groups causes an individual’s behaviour and outline the character, ethics and passions of a person.
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Body Social structure – Examples: “People learn their behaviours and attitudes because of their location in the social structure (whether they are privileged, deprived or in between) and they act accordingly. ” (Henslin, Possamai, Possamai-Inesedy 2013, p. 77). The upbringing of Maxx and what he experienced determined his attitudes and behaviours. This was portrayed throughout the film and shows us how it can affect an individual. (Elysium, 2013) Social mobility – The influencing of socialisation upon individuals/groups in regards to conforming and reforming.
Examples: “My intent in this section is to demonstrate how our beliefs about the class structure and social mobility more generally ( l) serve to reinforce existing levels of social inequality as inevitable and normal, and (2) are replicated and supported through the countless popular films we have enjoyed from early childhood well into adulthood. ” (Dowd 2010, p. 45). Symbolic culture – Different ways minorities are represented in the media in relation to their social class. Examples: “Media images are generally consistent with traditional structural divisions of power in society based on sex, race, and gender and consistent with the generally conservative interests of the owners of the media outlets. ” (Eschholz, Bufkin, Long 2002, p. 325). Conclusion There are many differentiating factors which determine social inequality as shown in Elysium. Symbolic materials create an instinctive understanding and belief within an individual or group. It is where the social structure is built upon and drastically changes the way of life for a person or group. These factors reflect how society is formed and reinforces existing degrees of social inequality.