Explain The Irrationality Of Rationality Of The Four Properties Of Mc Donaldization And Apply Them After You Go To Mcdonalds

1564 words - 6 pages

"McDonaldization,...is the process by which the principles of the fast-food restaurant are coming to dominate more and more sectors of American society as well as of the rest of the world". These are the words of George Ritzer comparing the processes incorporated by the McDonald franchise and the impact of social structural change on human interaction and identity. He illustrates the linkage between the irrationality of rationality with the four properties of social organization and how it is affecting society today.McDonaldization, as I interpret it, seems to be, at the root, a measure of control through a specific division of labour in efforts to minimize costs and maximize profits. Of course it goes beyond just that but we will start here for now. Ritzer illustrates this point effectively through his four properties of social organization, efficiency, calculability, predictability, and control.Efficiency is "choosing the optimum means to a given end". Basically getting things done as fast as possible. I am sure we would all like to be more efficient at our respective jobs, and left to our own devices, we would all strive to achieve efficiency. The difference in the McDonalized society we live in, this efficiency is imposed upon you, and your own methods are obsolete. This does not just apply to just McDonalds, it is in everything, it is what we have learned our entire lives, and it teaches us to simply except what institutions tell us is most efficient. Now let's look at the irrationality of this rationality. Ritzer uses an example of a salad bar. When you go to a salad bar you have already accepted that it is more efficient for you to go get the salad yourself, in reality you have just bought an empty plate, and you are doing the work to fill it, this is not more efficient for you, it is more efficient for them and you're paying for it. He also uses the ATM as an example, essentially we are paying the bank money so we can be bank tellers, and it's crazy when you think about it. I earn money at my own job so I can pay other establishments to work for them, (it is so irrational that it doesn't even look right when I see it on this computer screen). Both of these examples illustrate that McDonaldization forces people to not deal with real people, making them put their heads down at their own jobs and accept their own bureaucratic efficiency.Next is calculability, it emphasizes the portion size, the cost, and the time it takes to get the desired product. This has a tendency to make us think that quality is equal to large quantities of things. Its right in the name "Big Mac", or "Whopper", the implication of more causes us to buy it; we have been conditioned without even realizing it. Herein lies the irrationality, you go to the counter and subconsciously say to yourself, "you can make me a super big burger in 30 seconds for this much money? This has to be good, when really a bowl of crap isn't made better if you quickly pile more crap on top....

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