Fight Club Ethics

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Ethics Film Analysis

The film, Fight Club exemplifies various ethical dilemmas relating to cultural standards, organizational structure, and ethics systems.  These ethical dilemmas are presented through both personas of the main character, Tyler Durden.  The situations that he faces can be related to real-life ethical issues that are relevant today.  Fight Club illustrates many ethical notions that tie strongly to the culture of the organization and the situations that arise.

The culture that exists around the fight club is founded on principles of brotherhood, loyalty, and secrecy.  These attitudes are stressed through the concept of group norms, where all members are to abandon their individualistic ideals to conform to the society of the club. In order to gain acceptance to the group, individuals must endure a period of hostile treatment. The treatment is not questioned by the members because of their desire for acceptance. This submission to the club shows deindividuation because members are not referred to by name unless they pass away. The roles of the members overpower their sense of individuality and they begin to lack a sense of their true selves. They do not object to this environment because of the authoritative gap between Tyler and the rest of the members. The fight club members do everything that Tyler says to do, even if the actions are not ethical. The obedience to authority displays the lack of control that any one member of the group possesses.

This obedience closely resembles that of the historical ideology of Nazism. Adolph Hitler fulfilled a void that was needed at the time, just as Tyler Durden did for the members of fight club. However, he gained a dangerous amount of power that created a cult-like following. His destructive actions were far beyond unethical. His propaganda led to the mass genocide of millions of people, leaving only “members” who he believed possessed the “right” qualities of the perfect human race....
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