Crash: Psychology and Officer John Ryan

Topics: Psychology, Maslow's hierarchy of needs, Abraham Maslow Pages: 3 (915 words) Published: September 26, 2013
The movie Crash has a lot to do with psychology; many of the characters’ actions and behaviors can be explained in psychological terms, especially in terms of social psychology. For example, in one of the first scenes, Rick and Jean Cabot, who are white, are carjacked by Anthony and Peter, who are black. Jean attributes the carjacking to the skin color of the two men: she believes that they carjacked her because they are black. When the Cabots are home, it seems that there is little equity in their relationship. Jean even says to a certain extent that she wishes that Rick did more, cared more. Later in the movie, stereotyping falls into place as Officer Tom Hansen, a young police officer, murders Peter because he feels that all black men are dangerous. This is because he experienced Cameron Thayer, another black man that Hansen and his partner John Ryan encountered the night before, acting out of rage. Also, when the Cabots are being carjacked, fear comes into play as well. The amygdala is what is what is helping them respond to the fear, hence the heavier breathing and all the actions that come along with being afraid. The sympathetic nervous system is arousing their bodies, helping them to cope with the situation at hand. The social cultural perspective is the biggest perspective covered in this movie, because it deals with how people behave towards one another. More specifically, the social cultural perspective reveals how behavior and thinking vary across situations and cultures. Culture influences behavior, this is how the two are related. Crash also has to do with development as well, mostly moral development. Many of the characters waver between conventional morality and postconventional morality. For example, Detective Graham Waters has to choose whether to arrest the white officer who has murdered three black men, and in this case, murdered a black officer, who is a drug dealer, or to help corrupt the case. Detective Waters also deals with obedience...
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