Social Influence and Society Essay

Social Influence and Society Essay

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Society is ever changing and the people are just the same. Throughout history, it is shown that people change and mold to their surroundings. But when a deeper look is taken it is revealed that there is a minority that is unwilling or unable to fit these standards as most people do. These people tend to be forced into seclusion or made to fend for themselves. This is shown through the colonization of America and up into more recent times. The Native Americans are the first to make a life on this land, and when the English set up a new society, the Natives are forced onto smaller and smaller plots of land until forced to conform or to live on a reservation. The idea of this societal conformity is shown in “What You Pawn I Will Redeem” by Sherman Alexie, a short story author. Society's pressure to improve an individual living differently is hurting more than it is helping.
Jackson is a Native American living on the streets in Seattle. He is alone and no matter how much effort he makes to form his own tribe-like community, he is always left with only himself. Jackson is feeling the pressure of society to fall into the role that many Natives are today. Society stereotypes Natives to be alcoholics that are very fickle with their money. Jackson is subconsciously allowing these social pressures to control his actions with his effort to obtain his grandmother's ceremonial blanket. The man that owns the pawn shop gives him money to put towards reaching his goal, but he quickly spends it on alcohol for him and his friends. This is an example of positive social pressure becoming negative because he feels the pressure to have a tribal community around him, and this causes him to ignore the goal and focus on others. While this may seem posi...


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...ildren, and then stay home and raise the children. Though this path is intended to be a positive pressure from society, it can lead to a hard life for the woman and the children. Sometimes these women become depressed or angry, and this gives the opportunity to cause an unsafe household to develop for the kids, and the woman that is raising them.The social pressure is intended to make a happy and healthy home life for the family, but can ultimately destroy the family and it’s dynamic.



Works Cited
Alexie, Sherman. “What You Pawn I Will Redeem”. Comp. John Schilb and John Clifford. Making Literature Matter. Print.
O’Connor, Flannery. “A Good Man is Hard to Find”. Comp. John Schilb and John Clifford. Making Literature Matter. Print.
Russell, Karen. “St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves”. Comp. John Schilb and John Clifford. Making Literature Matter. Print.


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