Selective Perception in Paul Haggis' Crash

853 WordsFeb 17, 20064 Pages
Sociology 113AE Reaction Paper 10/20/05 Selective Perception in Paul Haggis ' Crash Prejudices are the strong backbone to the concept of racism. They are the labels and images that we designate to a group of people on the basis of what we imagine to be the characteristics of all members of that group. More often than not, they are incorrect and incomplete. The film Crash, directed by Paul Haggis, addresses the strong existence of prejudices against many groups from various perspectives in today 's society. One of the more predominant prejudices presented in Haggis ' film comes in the form of selective perception. Selective perception prevents people from seeing the truth of other individuals because of the labels we place on…show more content…
However, it is not something easily changed. People who watch Crash are likely to recognize that they have passed the same kind of judgment on another. Nevertheless, they are likely to continue to do so. Selective perception doesn 't only affect people in the form of determining ones race. It is even more so present when trying to determine one 's character and actions. Just like making wrongful assumptions of ones race, wrongful assumptions are also made when predicting ones character based on ethnicity. A person exhibiting selective perception will choose to see a person 's character based on the negative labels that have been condemned to their race, rather then looking at the person as an individual. This form of prejudice is also very present in Haggis ' Crash. One of the more notable examples of it takes place in the conversation between the District Attorney of Los Angeles and his wife, both of Caucasian descent. The wife wants all of the locks on her house changed after they were changed by a young Mexican male. She fears that he is in a gang and will sell a copy of the keys to one of his "Homies". As it turns out though, the man is very family oriented and doesn 't fit the judgment of the DA 's wife. The wife passed a judgment on the man due to selective perception and her choice to only see him in a negative way. The wife isn 't the only person who places this judgment on the locksmith. A similar

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