Structural Functionalism In The Movie Breakfast Club

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In the movie “Breakfast Club” five high school students are punished with an 8 hour Saturday detention. In the beginning, they introduce each of the characters as the criminal, the athlete, the princess, the brain, and the basket case. All five students are from different groups of social status and think they all have nothing in common, but soon realize they have more things in common than expected. This movie can be seen through Structure-Functionalism, one out of three core theories. Structural functionalism view society as a system of co-dependent part that work together to ensure survival, meaning each structure has a certain function or purpose to be in society. In this film, each character is given a name upon how they act and what clique they interact with. A functionalist perceptive might say that each type of character has their own meaning or impact to society and without them society will become dysfunctional. Our first character named Andrew Clark on the wrestling team played the status of the “Athlete”, a person who is proficient in sports and other forms of physical exercise. Through a Functionalist perspective they would say that sports help Social systems maintain balance and operate efficiently. They help by providing opportunities for conflict management and release, Socialization, individual of different diversity to interact, and social mobility. Since Clark is participating in wrestling he is contributing to society by playing the sport because without “Athlete’s” there would be no Sports to play. Because it sport contributes to society it makes it a working/functioning part. John Bender played the status of the “Criminal”, a person who has committed a crime. He is deviant, and violates society formal laws. He is seen in the movie, disrespecting the teacher, having marijuana in his locker, and breaking rules. Functionalist Perspectives on crime is that its normal and a necessary part of society. It contributes by creating social unity, society learns not to do this behavior. A functionalist perspective on this type of character would be that he has a function in society. Claire Standish played the status of the “Princess”, as shown in the movie, is a girl that is stuck up and has been

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