Ethnocentrism in the Movie “Crash”

The movie “Crash” was directed by Paul Haggis in 2004 to depict common sociological phenomena in modern man. The characters in the film revealed the implications of stereotypes, discrimination, and prejudice to different races and ethnicities. Instead of focusing on a single character, the movie is narrated from the perspectives of several characters who originate from diversified ethnic backgrounds. With that said, it can be deduced that ethnocentrism was a key theme in the film. Ethnocentrism is defined as the dynamic that pressures specific individuals to use their own group’s ways of doing things as a yardstick for judging others (Henslin, 2016).

After completing the movie, it was evident that the moral of the narrative is that no culture should be deemed more superior than another.

In essence, ethnocentrism indicates that people tend to judge each other from the perspective of their own culture. This phenomenon is depicted in numerous instances in the film. For example, the first scene in the movie centers around a car collision between two characters: Kim Lee and Ria.

In the film, Lee adopted a condescending attitude towards Ria when she emphasized that Mexicans do not know how to drive; similarly, Ria demeaned Lee when she explained that she was extremely shocked for being hit by an Asian driver (Haggis, 2004). The skirmish between the Latino and the Asian escalated owing to their refusal to compromise the superiority of their cultural beliefs. Therefore, ethnocentrism can be used to explain the emergence of conflicts between immigrants and other communities in tightly-knit communities (Machida, 2012).

In brief, both characters were used to reveal why people look down on others when they assume that their ethnic backgrounds are superior to others.

In this film, ethnocentrism is painted as a vice that is detrimental to the entire society. Another character who was used to depict the adverse implications of ethnocentrism is the Persian shop owner, Farhad. In this case, Farhad was both a victim and perpetrator of racial injustice through ethnocentrism. During a particular scene, Farhad was labeled a terrorist just because he was considering to buy a gun (Haggis, 2004). In the end, he was so angry that he left the shop without buying the firearm. Shortly afterward, Farhad misjudged a Hispanic locksmith called Daniel Ruiz. Due to Ruiz’s tattoos and ethnic background, it was easy for Farhad to categorize him as a Hispanic criminal. Hence, Farhad almost shot Ruiz when he wrongly accused him of robbing his shop. Based on the actions of Farhad, it can be discerned that people turn to ethnocentrism when they feel that the survival of their culture is threatened by other influences (Machida, 2012). All in all, it is apparent that the movie highlights the need for minimizing ethnocentrism in society.

The movie “Crash” was produced to highlight how people from different cultures and ethnic backgrounds interrelate. Ethnocentrism often transpires when people feel that others endanger their cultures. As a result, ethnocentrism was painted as a common phenomenon in the narrative. Kim Lee and Ria depicted ethnocentrism when they judged each other from their cultural perspectives. Furthermore, Farhad disclosed the occurrence of ethnocentrism as well as its adverse effects on society. In summary, ethnocentrism should be seen as evil in the community since it sparks conflicts between people of differing cultural backgrounds.

Thomas theorem says is The simple statement that if men define situations as real, they are real in their consequences.

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