Fathers and Sons in Dead Poet's Society

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Fathers and Sons in Dead Poet's Society A father is perhaps the most important role model to his son. The dominant culture states that when a boy is young, he looks to his father for help in identifying his role in society as a man. As the boy grows older, he looks to his father for guidance as to what course he should take in life. The boy becomes a man, and takes care of his father when he grows old and decrepit. This ideology is best shown on the classic television show, Leave it to Beaver. Mr. Cleaver is always present and understanding, willing to help his two sons, Wally and Beaver, through any problem they might face. In the present day political arena, a good demonstration of this status quo is the Bush dynasty. Ex-president George Bush set good morals and gave his son the nurturing needed to one day follow in his footsteps as president of the United States. However, while this stereotype of the perfect father is ideal, it is not realistic. Many times, the father figure in a son's life is abrasive or absent. When the father is not a typical role model to his son, the son suffers strong psychological repercussions and grows to hate and despise his father. This problem appears in present day society in the news, television and specifically, in film. In the movie Dead Poet's Society, directed by Peter Weir, overbearing and absent fathers make negative impacts on their son's development during adolescence. Fatherhood is a common experience for adult men. More than 90 percent of all men get married and of that percentage, 90 percent have children (Snarey 3). John Snarey writes that there are five elements that all fathers must apply to their parenting. First, the father must be present at childbirth. This sets the stage for the father's involvement in childcare for years to come. If the father is not present at the delivery, he is more likely to not be present while the child grows up. Second, the father must be home and available to their child while they are awake. On average, mothers are available three times the amount that father's are to their children (Snarey 33).

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