American History X

Topics: Discrimination, Protagonist, Racism Pages: 2 (768 words) Published: October 23, 2012
American History X encompasses many sociological concepts. The concept that is present throughout the entire film and constantly in the forefront is racism and ethnocentric beliefs. Although these two are the most prominent, they are not the most important. The most important is the sociological concept primary socialization, but is not displayed until later. First Racism is introduced in the opening scenes through the use of derogatory terms. The main character, Derek Vineyard, begins to refer to African Americans and other minorities as parasites and problems in the United States. In this same scene he also shows views of white supremacy because he states that minorities come to America only to exploit it as opposed to establishing themselves as “model citizens”. As the movie progresses, it is established that Vineyard is part of an actual white supremacist organization known as the D.O.C. This is where the concept of ethnocentric beliefs is displayed. The group believes that whites are the supreme beings and that other minorities are at their feet. They believe that the government shows no concern for Americans that are down and out, but will rush to help out illegal immigrants. They carry out racist acts throughout the movie. The first one that they perform is the raiding of a grocery store. The D.O.C. enters the market and begins to beat any person of color insight while also screaming derogatory statements. This is followed by a dinner scene where another character tries to bring reason to high criminal rates of African Americans as social inequalities. This scene highlights more racism in that Vineyard is trying to validate his thoughts that the black race are naturally criminals, but he is quickly shot down by people around the table who are able to refute his claims. It eventually escalates and he attacks his own sister. This is the first scene that also displays his anti-Semitic views. It was clear that he did indeed have them by having swastikas...
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