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The Representation of Young Offenders institutions is always negative in order to support the dominant ideology with reference to Out of Control .

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The Representation of Young Offenders institutions is always negative in order to support the dominant ideology with reference to Out of Control . It could be argued that there is an ideological necessity that young offenders institutions are shown as shocking places, this is primarily because of the government. This because the government help enforce the dominant ideology that crime does not pay. If the media were to promote the institutions as being an 'all right' place to go, where you can live a fairly comfortable life whilst being punished, society would be in uproar about the media promoting the idea. Showing that it was not that 'bad' and in fact more like a 'holiday'. Despite this a lot of tabloid newspapers attempt to suggest this is the case. The media highlight the bulk of negative incidents that have happened in some institutions, and then compile them all together to make the institution look a bad place based on conflict and not reform. Society needs to see the young offenders getting punished whilst being reformed at the same time. The majority of media texts created based on the institutions of Britain act as a deterrent to potential offenders and society in general. They all follow a similar structure, where a hierarch system is created within the inmates, with a shared resentment towards authority. Anyone who dares to challenge the hierarch system faces a violent attack or even death. Many texts such as Scum, Scrubbers and Out of Control, have been created based on young offenders institutions throughout history. ...read more.


A hierarchy system is present in the film and this causes most of the violence and uproar within the borstal itself. Like Scum, Scrubbers was separated by race and social stature but all the females' resent authority. Towards the end of the film all of the females join together and cause a riot; there is pandemonium within the borstal and the authority figures lose control. Through the hatred of lesbian Carol and immoral teenage mother Annetta, we follow the incessant violence; bitching and brawling that have made Britain's borstals renowned for being, notorious breeding grounds for crime. This supports the argument that there is an obligation to show young offenders institutions as horrific places within media texts. Although it supports the argument the message given is not a very reassuring one for the audience, thus leaving them with doubts and disputes about the system. From looking at Scrubbers there are many similarities with its 'brother' Scum. The basic narrative structure and the ideological views of borstals in general are once again replicated. There are definitely no connotations between Scrubbers being glamorous and being in a young women's borstal is an easy life. The film takes the worst social issues raised in the borstal system such as bullying and suicide and brings them into the social 'limelight'. Although the issues are raised there is no sense of resolution throughout the film. The film cannot offer resolution because then it would be attempting to give the answers to real social problems and it would suggest that its solutions would really work. ...read more.


Sam was a lost case before he went into the institution and it would take a lot for him to change, the audience are left to make their own assumptions about what will happen to him. Both these characters support the argument raised proving that there is a need for the institution to be shown as less than a 'holiday camp'. Danny on the other hand contradicts the argument by sticking up for himself and creating a life for him and his family once he got out of the institution. Un-like Scum and Scrubbers, Out of Control offers a character (Danny) that comes out of the institution a better person that has learnt by his mistake. This character offers a path that people would hope for the majority of young offenders in 'the real world.' Out of control offers the balance of good and bad that audiences want to see. Both violence and death is present within the young offenders institution and the audience know this, with out being shown graphic scenes of the unpleasant monstrosities. Also a resolution is offered contrasting with the dire out-comes. From looking at and examining three texts with the same genre/ narrative it can be concluded that there is an ideological necessity for young offenders institutions to be shown as shocking places, although a balance needs to be met offering some resolution. Neither Scum nor Scrubbers have characters come out of the institutions on a positive note, with a positive outlook ahead of them. These two seventies dramas support the proposed argument fully. But in contrast to this Dominic Savage's modern, docu-drama offers a good balance whilst raising social issues at the same time. ...read more.

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