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In this essay I will be considering the three main aspects of "The Simpsons". Firstly the idea of Equilibrium-Disruption-Equilibrium. This concept means that each episode follows a set pattern.

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Introduction

HOW IS THE ROLE OF THE FAMILY WITHIN AMERICAN SOCIETY REINFORCED BY "THE SIMPSONS" AND "THE FLINTSTONES"? In this essay I will be considering the three main aspects of "The Simpsons". Firstly the idea of Equilibrium-Disruption-Equilibrium. This concept means that each episode follows a set pattern. It starts off with the stereotypical Simpson Characters, Homer thinking about food, Marge organising family activities, Bart getting into trouble and Lisa being ingenious. This is then disrupted by one, or all of the four acting out of character, but by the end we return to the Equilibrium. The second idea I will be talking about is that of the "American Dream", and how the characters in the Simpsons are living up to their maximum potential. Then I will be considering how the episodes of the Simpson's we have studied both contrast and verify the sexist idea of how the family unit should act towards each other. Finally I will be considering how the episode of "The Flintstones" we studied compares to the episodes of "The Simpsons". The best example I have seen of Equilibrium-Disruption-Equilibrium is in the episode entitled "Bart gets an F". ...read more.

Middle

Therefore Homer does not give Bart the chance to succeed at school, and so Bart can not live up to his potential. As over half the family unit of the Simpsons are not fulfilling the idea of the "American Dream" it forces us to believe that this idea is a lie. The sexist beliefs of how the family unit acts is that the woman should stay at home to look after the children 24 hours a day 7 days a week, while the man goes out to earn the money. Homer does go to work but is dumb and does not do any thing to help within his workplace. He also cares more about food than his own family's success, we know this when as in the episode "Bart gets an F" he says "I just want to have a beer when I'm caring". Homer being the man of the family is supposed to be the dominant character within the household however it becomes clear that Marge is. Marge, although she is the woman and therefore is supposed to be dumb and immature, is actually very clever and sensible. ...read more.

Conclusion

In the Flintstones although, Fred is similarly shown as dumb, he is still the one that, in a way, manages the family unit. Although Wilma cooks cleans and runs their way of life, she looks to Fred in times of distress, that, according to sexism, women wouldn't be able to cope in. The episode we studied of the Flintstones is one where Wilma's Mother comes to stay. This episode starts of with Disruption rather than Equilibrium, as Wilma has sprained her ankle and so Fred has to do the cooking and cleaning to prepare for the arrival of Wilma's mother. This episode tilts back to equilibrium when Wilma runs straight to Fred for him to take action when she realises her Mother may be in trouble. However by the end of this episode we never really achieve complete Equilibrium as Wilma's mother, is still ordering Fred around. Fred hates the fact that at the beginning of this episode he has to cook and clean, this shows the sexist attitude the Flintstones is based around that circulated during the 1960's. The sexist feeling is also highlighted by the fact that men do all the heavy lifting in this episode. All of the "Bornto Moving Co." workers are men and Fred has to carry Wilma's mother heavy furniture around the house. ...read more.

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