Amish Clash of Cultures

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The Amish in America - Clash of cultures
Amish look like they stepped out of the rural 19th Century.

Some 200,000 Amish people live in above 20 US states and in the Canadian region of Ontario and also in different parts of the world like Australia. The Amish are the most traditional and religious Old Order groups, people ride horses and buggies rather than cars and have no telephones or electricity in their homes. Amish believe that the community is at the heart of their life and faith, and that the way to salvation is to live as a loving community apart from the world. Witness is a 1985 American thriller film directed by Peter Weir and starring Harrison Ford and Kelly McGillis. The screenplay by William Kelley, Pamela Wallace, and Earl W. Wallace focuses on a detective protecting a young Amish boy who becomes the target of a ruthless killer after he witnesses a murder in Philadelphia. The film is mainly about clashing of two ideologies. These ideologies are those of the Amish, and of the modern English as the Amish ideals are in direct contrast to the American consumerist ideas. The two worlds come together when Book drives Rachel to her father in Eli’s house. There are many scenes that highlight the clash of cultures starting with the first scene in which Samuel and Rachel are in their stock black Amish clothes, at the train station. They stand out since they aren’t wearing bright clothing like everyone else. Costume is an important film technique, as it shows the contrast between Amish and the English.

The costume is also clear in the scene in where Book is wearing Amish clothes, which are Rachel’s dead husbands clothes, and Book says, “How do I look?” and Rachel responds by saying “You look plain”. This is seen as a compliment, and her accepting him, also him accepting the way of the Amish.

A key scene where book gives back the gun to Rachel after taking it from her shows the clash of the cultures and book trying to fit in with the Amish. This...
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