Essay Questions on the Breakfast Club

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Question #1, Option b
Roles are like “parts” we play in life, each with a set of expectations specific to that position (rules). In The Breakfast Club, Mr. Vernon has the role of the Principle. Naturally this means his “rules” include both the explicit (written out and specifically defined) ones such as managing the school’s staff, and creating and carrying out policies and procedures, and the implicit (implied) ones such as trying to guide his students down the right path and leading by example by being respectful and fair to his students. In detention Mr. Vernon tells the students that they’re not to talk, move from their seats, or sleep, and that they’re expected to write an essay of no less than a thousand words on “who they think they are”. These rules are explicit as he lists them at the very beginning of detention. He also expects the students not to be disrespectful towards him, and to be cooperative and do as he says. These rules are implicit as he never outright says them, but obviously becomes angered when they’re not followed. A role bound relationship is a relationship that never goes beyond what is expected of two people with those specific roles; it does not become more personal or intimate. The advantage of a role bound relationship is that the rules are, for the most part, clearly defined and fairly static, not prone to changing, so little effort is necessary for knowing how to interact with the others in that relationship. While Mr. Vernon is indeed in a role bound relationship with John Bender (“the criminal”) at first, primarily playing his sub-role as the disciplinarian to John’s role as the rule-breaker, Mr. Vernon violates several key role based rules by getting personally insulting and threatening with John in the closet, forever altering their roles into something more personal and inevitably less role bound. At the point in the movie at which we were asked to stop watching, we didn’t have enough information to conclusively assess...
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