Literature Review

Topics: Social class, Sociology, Working class Pages: 3 (1596 words) Published: October 20, 2014

Social Inequality and it’s Representation in Elysium
Movies are an important vehicle for the transmission of cultural norms and understandings as they allow producers to present their views on present day problems and increase our understanding of particular historical events or the lives of people in other places (Dowd 2010 in Sutherland & Feltey 2013). This is reflected through the film Elysium (2013) in which director Neill Blomkamp constructs and challenges the concept of social inequality, in terms of class and ethnicity. Social inequality is the existence of unequal opportunities for different social classes within a society, in such a way as to make one group superior or inferior to another group. This inequality is manifested through many forms in today’s society and Elysium provides the perfect medium for Blomkamp to present and critique current issues such as immigration, status in society, and access to health care. Immigration

Elysium perfectly depicts the real life struggle of immigration, which is an ongoing problem in Australian society. Immigration is the movement of people into another country or region to which they are not native in order to settle there permanently. In the movie Elysium, the people on Earth are known as the “illegal’s” who are relentlessly kept from entering Elysium at all costs. This reflects current Australian society as asylum seekers attempt to enter Australia. The reason that these “illegal’s” want to flee planet Earth for a more comfortable life in Elysium is paralleled to the reason why many immigrants decide to cross the border and find a better life in Australia. In Elysium, Earth is ravaged with pollution, overpopulation and disease. That is why the people of Earth attempt to make it onto Elysium so that they can escape the living conditions they are faced with. This illustrates Australian society as asylum seekers attempt to migrate into Australia to escape war, poverty and politics in their...

References: Eschholz, S., Bufkin, J., and J.Long (2002) “Symbolic Reality Bites: Women and Racial/Ethnic Minorities in Modern Film” in Sociological Spectrum, Vol 22 (3): Pp 299-334.
Henslin, J., Possamai, A. and Possamai-Inesedy, A., 2013, Sociology: A Down to Earth Approach, Pearson Australia, Frenchs Forest, NSW.
Lareau, Annette and Conley, Dalton. Social Class: How Does it Work? New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 2008. (accessed April 9, 2014).
Riggs, W. D. and Baird, B., 2009, The Racial Politics of Bodies, Nations and Knowledges, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, [Online] Available from: <> [9 April 2014].
Saul, B 2003,”From White Australia to Woomera: The story of Australian Immigration”, Journal Of Refugee Studies, 16, 4, pp. 449-450, SocINDEX with Full Text, EBSCOhost, viewed 9 April 2014
Sutherland, J and Feltey, K., 2013, Cinematic Sociology: Social Life in Film, Sage Publications, 2nd edn.
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