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Power Struggle in Complex Society - Essay Example

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Power Struggle in Complex Society

Kathy’s lawyer assures her that as a result of the council’s mistake, they will refund Behrani’s money and return her house. Behrani refutes these terms insisting that the council must pay a higher price, but the later refuses. Lester who is a married man with children becomes involved with Kathy and leaves his family for her. In order to prove himself to Kathy, Lester intimidates and harasses Behrani into selling the house to Kathy at the original purchase price which Behrani accepts on condition that the council shall reimburse him and he shall give the funds to Kathy for her to register the house under his name. Kathy accepts this deal and they all go to the council offices to legalize the deal, but once outside Lester manhandles Behrain which enrages his son Esmail who takes Lester’s gun and threatens to shoot him. The scuffle attracts attention of police officers who kill Esmail. Behrani is erroneously arrested but is freed once Lester confesses and is later jailed. In the film, several policies and attitudes are discriminatory often disregarding the plight of the common folk. The council’s policy to evict Kathy without thoroughly checking their books for any errors was quiet unfair not to mention oppressing Behrani by refusing to buy back Kathy’s house at a higher price not considering all the repairs he had done on the house. However, Behrani’s attitude towards the purchase of Kathy’s house was also oppressive to Kathy as he disregarded the injustice committed on Kathy by the council because he only sort monetary gain. The police officers’ attitude of “shoot first, ask questions later” resulted in the death Esmail who had no faults other than trying to save his father (Ebert, 2003). Lester misused his power and authority by intimidating Behrani into reselling Kathy’s house and also brought suffering upon his family when he abandoned them in order to be with Kathy whose husband had also abandoned her because of her alcohol addiction. As Kathy battled this addiction, Lester did not care and ordered a bottle of wine during their date. Throughout the story, we see obvious wanton abuse of authority and office. (Ebert, 2003). The two major power holders in the story are the council and the police force. Power is seen as a means to achieve an end; clearly portrayed by Lester’s mistreatment of Behrani as he forcefully makes him sell back Kathy’s house. In addition to this, Lester also manhandles Behrani outside the council offices as he deems himself untouchable by the rule of law. Moreover, the policemen outside the council offices kill an innocent man without carrying out any investigations. The council officers also misuse their power by forcibly evicting Kathy for alleged nonpayment of taxes and also uses its power to try and recapture Kathy’s house disregarding Behrani’s input to repair the house for resale. In the film, power is believed to bring about change in people’s perception. Power is used as a tool to obtain possessions and to dehumanize others. For instance, Lester uses his power to help recapture Kathy’s house from Behrani and also uses his authority as deputy to bully Behrani while outside the council offices. The county council uses its power to wrongfully evict Kathy from her property thus ...Show more
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Summary

Power Struggle in Complex Society Name: Institution: Power Struggle in Complex Society Oppression refers to the exercise of power in a cruel manner. It is manifested through wanton use of authority by both the police and council officers. Kathy who is a drug addict is abandoned by her husband and is evicted from the house she inherited from her father by the county council for allegedly failing to pay taxes (Dubus, 1999)…
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