March 5, 2014
In the film The Breakfast Club there are various social psychological theories and concepts that describe the inner selves of the characters. The characters in the film are initially perceived in a certain manner by each other because of knowing the way they behave in school and the type of people and environment they surround themselves with in school. However one detention on a Saturday brings these characters together and throughout the film their true personalities and behaviors start to reveal themselves by means of social psychological theories and concepts. The characters individually and as a group display their personalities through theories and concepts of social psychology. At the very start of the film, one of the concepts displayed is the acceptance type of conformity. The principal assigns the characters (students) to complete a task and because he is a figure of authority, the characters accept having to complete the task by the end of the day without any attempts to alter that. One of the students, Claire Standish, is revealed to display the concept of narcissism, which is unfortunately a dark side of herself. This is evident as Claire claims that she is popular and loved by her fellow schoolmates and seems to care and showcase her rich and beauty too much. She is, as her detention-mates discover, full of herself. In addition this also shows signs of the spotlight effect theory which can relate to Claire in that she believes that her schoolmates look at her and pay so much attention to her appearance add rich, spoiled-like behavior. Another character to show a theory of social psychology is Allison Reynolds. In the film, Allison is a character with an introvert personality, although she also displays strange and out-of-the-ordinary-actions. However, truth, she is a troubled person who feels that she never receives any attention from anyone and feels neglected, especially by her parents. Due to this, she expects others to be able to interpret why she acts the way she acts (strange, awkward, out-of-the-ordinary) when in fact people are not able to fully understand or interpret her emotions. The theory of illusion of transparency can be applied to Allison here. Another character, Andrew Clark, displays the theory of self-fulfilling prophecy. It is revealed that Andrew is expected to be a great and exceptional athlete by his dad. In addition to that, Andrew is expected to be aggressive and overpowering over his opponents which contribute to his behavior toward others. As a group, the characters all display the concept of learned helplessness. It is revealed that each of the characters have problems and issues with their parents and because of their parents, they are faced with bad, repeated events which they have no control over. For Claire, her parents are rich and spoil her and as such she has to behave like them as they set an example for her. Due to this she has also grown...