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The Film “Remembering the Titans” by Boaz Yakin

Remembering the Titans is a sports drama based on real events. The school League of American Football has become a real test for the Titans team. The difficulty was not the game at all but the composition of the participants. At the peak of racial discrimination and the struggle for equality, the coach will not only have to join the new team himself but also rally a strong team. The film’s description is based on the events in the early 70s of the last century. At that time, racial discrimination was ubiquitous, but it had already begun to take a different turn. This was when American society became more tolerant and tolerant towards representatives of a wide variety of racial and social groups. The director of the film “Remembering the Titans” Boaz Yakin, showed the story through the prism of a sports game. Through the entire storyline, the viewer can see how the mood of the main characters and their attitude to the current situation changed. The values in the film, concerning the internal interaction of the characters with each other, give the movie a socially important meaning.

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In 1971, events took place in American society that led to the humiliation of racial discrimination. Now schools are uniting, and students have to establish contact with each other. This situation is particularly acute for the local football team “Titans.” In addition to the fact that new players have appeared, there has also been a replacement of the coach: an African-American Herman Boone comes to replace the beloved Bill Yots. Boone immediately makes it clear to his players that he will not tolerate any discrimination within the team. Together, they go to the training camp before the season and start their studies to train properly and make friends during this time. Boone warns that he needs a cohesive team focused on achieving results ( Remembering the Titans, 2000). He will not tolerate any discriminatory antics from guys. By the end of the gathering, almost everyone finds a common language and even makes friends.

As a result, having overcome all prejudices and realizing that a person cannot be judged without getting to know him properly, the Titans team was able to have a wonderful, productive season. However, when they return home, they find that discrimination is still rampant, and people are unwilling to accept the new rules. Players have to not only defend themselves from attacks from the outside but also settle intra-team conflicts. In order to show a high-quality game, it is necessary to work, first of all, for the result, and it will not be until everyone unites together and makes friends for a common goal. Moreover, there are several situations in the films that demonstrate a biased attitude towards blacks. For example, when teams with different races united, they did not want to shake hands with blacks and avoided them in every possible way.

The relationship between dominant and minority groups can be characterized as separatist or even militant. Segregation is the physical and social separation of categories of people. Usually, the majority protects minorities by distancing them from themselves. The place of residence, schools, classes, hospitals, and even cemeteries can be separate. Whereas pluralism encourages differences without recognizing disadvantages, segregation prescribes separation that harms the minority (Kirkinis et al., 2021). Belligerent attitudes in the film are manifested in large-scale boycotts and unwillingness to deal with blacks.

The simultaneous nature of both the majority and the minority is possible due to various psychological mechanisms. The majority usually exerts a normative influence based on the individual’s desire to be accepted by the group. In contrast, the impact of the minority is associated with cognitive focus on the stimulus (Carter et al., 2017). In other words, being under the power of the majority, the individual is more concerned with how the group will perceive him than with what “in reality” is the object of perception. Consequently, the majority forms inequality by its scale. Moreover, the minority, under the influence of the dominant group, tend to change their opinion in favor of the majority.

The characters in the film relate to the idea of race as a biological construct. Previously, it was believed that black people could transmit viruses and bacteria-specific only to their race. Consequently, they were not greeted by the hand and did not even eat at the same table. For example, in the film, one of the main characters calls a black player a “monkey”, even this insult is based on biological differences.

Racial segregation in the United States is separating the white population of the United States from other ethnic groups (mainly blacks and Indians). Blacks were considered second-class citizens, with the worst education, worst medical care, living in a ghetto, with wages two less than white workers, often the lack of opportunity to participate in elections. Segregation by residence was established in libraries, catering establishments, theaters, churches, swimming pools, transport, schools. The film showed areas and establishments for blacks; they did not want to accept a white person there and reacted quite aggressively. In addition, the film presents racial segregation by income level. Thus, blacks received several times less than white people in the same position and the same workload.

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In conclusion, Remembering the Titans is, first of all, a sports film in which I would like to say a special thanks for the beautifully shot game scenes. Even the most distant from sportspeople, the film will bring a lot of pleasure and adrenaline sensations. The winner is the one who is ready to step over his pride and internal stereotypes to achieve the desired result. A team game is not an easy task, especially if its participants hate each other. Without mutual understanding, there will be no joy of victory.

References

Carter, R. T., Lau, M. Y., Johnson, V., & Kirkinis, K. (2017). Racial discrimination and health outcomes among racial/ethnic minorities: A meta‐analytic review. Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development, 45(4), 232-259. Web.

Kirkinis, K., Pieterse, A. L., Martin, C., Agiliga, A., & Brownell, A. (2021). Racism, racial discrimination, and trauma: A systematic review of the social science literature. Ethnicity & health, 26(3), 392-412. Web.

Remembering the Titans. Directed by Boaz Yakin, performance by Denzel Washington. Walt Disney Pictures, 2000.

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