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Easy Rider Analysis

  • Date Submitted: 07/14/2011 03:59 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 38.4 
  • Words: 384
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Throughout the film, the treatment of the main characters in Easy Riders shows resemblance to the treatment of minorities during the ages. The counterculture was bred from discomfort with the mainstream culture, distinguishing themselves with the philosophy of peace of love in the time of war and conflict. The whole counter culture movement was born because of the dissatisfaction of authority by the population and because they believed they had better means of making the world a better place. Distinction creates opposition and opposition creates conflict, and as Thornton states: “Distinction is never just assertions of equal differences; they usually entail some claim to authority and presume the inferiority of others��?. The countercultural and minorities in a similar way are segregated from the mainstream culture, the only difference is one is voluntarily segregated while the other is involuntary and forced submission. Considering Pierre Bourdieu’s work on taste and social structures, if we take into account cultural capital, the counterculture and any minority group would come inferior to the mainstream culture. Many of those in counterculture sought after simplicity and valued the enlightenment of one, which really isn’t valued as much in the mainstream culture so it is easy to be treated poorly. In the film where George, Billy and Wyatt enters a restaurant, all they get are snickering remarks and no services which eventually makes them uncomfortable and leave, consequentially with their brief encounter with society (typical white alpha male characters) getting lynched in the middle of the night, resulting in George’s death. If George was a black character, I don’t think it would have made much difference. It is worldly known that Black have higher incarceration rates than any other race, and it wouldn’t be surprising if a black character would be in jail, especially where the setting of the characters were in the south where racial segregation was still hot....


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