The Changes in Representation of Teenagers in the Media.

Topics: Adolescence, Film, Young adult, Entertainment, Hilary Swank, Audience / Pages: 4 (819 words) / Published: Sep 13th, 2010
Since the birth of the subculture ‘teenagers’, these stereotypically rude, rebellious and rowdy young adults have been included and represented in movies, plays and any other type of entertainment. In studying two separate films from two separate time frames, I have found that they depict teens in many different ways, although the root of their problems, values and attitudes are very much the same. This essay will explore and discuss these changes in representation, and will strive to discover the core reasons for this development. The two movies I have studied; Freedom Writers (2007, directed by Richard LaGrevense) and To Sir with Love (1967, directed but James Clavell), will be my main examples in this report, while also using other materials as backup evidence. Paragraph one will address how teenagers are represented today, and how they were in the past. Paragraph two will explore the reasons behind the differences in portrayal, and paragraph three will decide on whether or not this is a realistic representation of teenagers in society.

Throughout the years, the ways teenagers have been depicted have changed dramatically in some areas, while staying completely the same in others. An example of this is the values of the teenagers in the two movies I have viewed. In To Sir with Love, the teenagers were valued relationships and being disrespectful, whereas in Freedom Writers, the teens valued respect and acceptance, but on the flip side, both movies represent the teenagers as rebellious, loud, hostile to those not of their social group, or those they do not accept, who are in search of an identity. These values and attitudes stem from broken homes and violence in both movies, as well as the want, and in some cases need, for respect. No matter what decade you look at, you will find that this is a common basis of problems in the bulk of teenagers. In both movies, and many others beside, you will find that a majority of the teens have a problem with authority, and

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