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Racism In Gran Turino Essay

1126 words - 5 pages

Prejudice’s in the Film ‘Gran Torino’
By Will Anderson

The movie Gran Torino contains many forms of predjudice and shows situations that are experienced by three diverse cultures. The three cultures or subcultures presented are the Caucasian, Hmong and gangs. I will describe some of the issues each group faces with socialization, discrimination and culture. Their diversity causes discrimination between them; they judge each other based on race alone without giving any thought to each person’s individuality. Due to the many differences in their socialization each of these groups are unique. Besides the cultural diversity here, there is always human diversity in every neighbourhood. Their ...view middle of the document...

The Caucasian see looking into the eyes as a sign of respect. This social difference could easily hinder the formation of friendships between the cultures because they could easily mistake each other for being rude and insulting.  

Discrimination is seen throughout this neighbourhood and is demonstrated differently by each group. Each group makes assumptions about each other based on the fact that they belong to a particular group rather than on personal merit. Several different forms of discrimination are seen throughout the movie.
Walt’s use of racial and ethnic slurs are used to insult the Hmong race, even though when he uses racial and ethnic slurs toward his friends it is only in humour. He shows prejudice toward the gangs by expecting them to respond positively to violence, when he violently tells them to stay away from Tao, which is obviously wrong because they retaliate. Walt does not like either the Hmong or the gang because they are different from him and he is acting out racism.
Sexism, economic deprivation and ageism are forms of discrimination demonstrated in the movie. Sexism is a form of discrimination that is illustrated by a Hmong family member when she mentions that Tao only does women’s work and will never become a real man by only doing what his sister tells him to do. The gang, too, demonstrates sexism by Assulting Sue. Economic deprivation is felt by Sue who believes that Tao will not be able to attend college because he is a Hmong male. She believes he will not have the same opportunities as other males even though he is smart enough to warrant the opportunities. The gang discriminates against Walt by believing him to be a weak old man who could be easily taken advantage of by stealing his car. They prematurely pass judgment on Walt based on his age alone, this is ageism. The gang also use oppression to get Tao to agree to the initiation of the gang. They force him by using intimidation and threats; Tao was in no position to say no. In all of these discrimination incidences each group is practicing stereotyping. They have an image of how each group will react based on an overly simplified view of that group.
The Caucasian and Hmong all had different lifestyle patterns passed on to them from generations before. Due to the individual...

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