Borat : Sociology Paper

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Borat, a journalist in the nation of Kazakhstan, is sent to America by his government to film a documentary about US culture in an attempt to improve the standard living in his own country. He and his producer, Azamat, arrive in New York City, where Borat, falling prey to culture clash winds up learning very much about American culture.

Most people cannot see something in front of them unless it is shown to them. In Borat, Americans learn a lot about how our culture is portrayed in other cultures, and we see this through Borat and his adventure. Borat is seen as an insulting movie on the surface, since it pokes fun at Americans and their culture but as you think deeper beneath the surface of the movie, it shows the shocking reality of the culture Americans live in. In this essay, I will be focusing on how Borat violates folkways and mores and how ethnocentrism is a large part of the film.

Folkways are norms based on popular habits and traditions. From the beginning of the film, when Borat is in the U.S., he violates a folkway of greeting people. A normal American citizen would not greet everyone they pass, that is just normal. If they did however greet everyone, it would be with a smile and a wave, but Borat greets most people he sees, for example on the subway and on the streets of New York, with a hug and a kiss on each cheek. When Borat goes in to hug random citizens, he is threatened and at one point a man sprints away from him, as if he was a murderer. This innocent act of greeting someone really displays how we interact as a culture. I believe Borat is poking fun at how separated we are from people physically in front of us, but we have no problem saying hello online to strangers. Another example of a violation of a folkway is when Borat is at a house for dinner and he brings his fecal matter down to the table. I see this as an example of a folkway because the people around the table were not upset, they knew he was not used to the culture and they...
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