Perception and Societal Factors

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Perception and Societal Factors
In order to illustrate societal factors that influence individual perception, I’ve chosen episode three of the British TV series “Endeavour1.” This crime drama series, set in 19652, follows a Detective Constable, Endeavour Morse, as he solves the weekly murder mystery. This episode centers on a homicide investigation; the victim of which is found in a storeroom of a missile factory about to be visited by a member of the royal family. I chose this particular episode because it provides a glance at British society (from royalty to factory worker) as well as a snapshot of inequality in the workplace and of course, the “town and gown3” rift found in areas surrounding lauded academia. The Role of Power

One of the key elements in solving the murder mystery was due to the expected behavior of the commoner when presented to a member of the royal family. The presence of a factory supervisor in shirt sleeves while in the reception line was so out of place that it called Morse’s attention though it was only a fleeting glimpse of the supervisor. Another instance was presented when the Chief Superintendent, who until now had always been the top rung in police hierarchy, was suddenly seen as just another rung in a very long ladder when “division” warns of repercussions if the investigation side rails an ongoing missile sale to a foreign country. The Role of Culture

A secondary plotline illustrates cultural influence on perceptions. The series is set in Oxford where Morse’s fellow detectives (non-Oxford graduates) immediately shun his academic background (he attended Oxford before joining the police force) and constantly pull rank on him by assigning tasks usually passed on to uniform officers. DC Morse is mocked as an eccentric egghead when he pursues “out-of-the-box” leads regardless of the investigative results of such leads. Even the Chief Superintendent seems a bit intimidated by the way he connects the dots. The Role of Social...
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