Radio Midterm Essay
Radio is an emotional story of a young man with many obstacles to overcome. On this difficult journey he must deal with being a little bit slower than everyone else. This disability limits him, and people in Hannah victimize him because he is unlike them. Because he is mentally/developmentally challenged, Radio has to work harder than anyone else in the film to do things that are easy for the non-disabled people in the film. There are several scenes in the movie which can clearly show how Radio gets along with his disability.
In the beginning of the movie, we see Radio at one of Hannah High’s football practices. He sees a football that got over the fence of the practice field and picks it up. As he is doing this, one of the players, Johnny Clay, tells him, “hey Einstein why don’t you try picking the ball up? Yeah you, dummy.” Radio proceeds to pick up the ball and take it home with him. This is the first clear cut way we see Radio discriminated against because he is developmentally challenged. Tobin Siebers says that “(disabled people) hurt because the able-bodied often refuse to accept them as members of the human community” (344). This is true in this case as the football player is clearly alienating Radio by making fun of him. He makes fun of him and exploits his difference from non-disabled people by harshly pointing out how Radio is different from society. Through Clay’s speech, it can be seen that he is not accepting Radio into society. Siebers says that social constructionism in its weak sense “posits that the dominant ideas, attitudes, and customs of a society influence the perception of bodies” (338). Society sees mentally disabled people as unlike the majority of people. Therefore it comes to the conclusion that these people do not belong in society. This is seen through Clay exploiting Radio’s disability by making fun of him. Although Clay may not know or care how his words affect Radio, Radio can understand...
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