Ethen Asuncion Ms. Morris Language Arts 2, Period 6 12 November 2012 Conforming to Society? Losing one’s individuality is most common to individuals who are exposed and influenced by others throughout life. The idea from “The Sociology of Leopard Man” by Logan Feyes discusses how indi viduals are confronted with conformity in order to fit in with society. Conforming is one obstacle that many people face through life. When a person conforms it means that they undergo a change in order to fit in with society.
Unlike conformists, non-conformists are the “unusual” part of the world that do not undergo a change within themselves to fit in with the world. These people are often looked down upon and ridiculed by their personal lifestyles. While some people decide not to give in to their personality, I believe that the idea from leopard, the influence of families, and the atmosphere of schools will dictate one’s decision whether to conform or not.
To remain a unique and novel individual within a society that is pressuring uniformity and homogeny is a feat that only the most determined individuals can attain but which is worth of all people’s attention. “The Sociology of Leopard Man” by Logan Feyes asserts that pressure to conform can lead to “self inflicted diseases” like “alcoholism and depression” (5). People become dissatisfied with their life from attempting to cover up their uniqueness because people may perceive this as “weird” in actuality they are destroying exactly what makes them feel satisfied as human beings.
Most people, however, are not strong enough mentally to separate themselves from their peers group as much as extreme non-conformists like Leopard Man, a man who lives in seclusion on a remote island. The company of other human beings comforts most people. Instead Feys suggests people to be part time non-conformists by “escaping… from time to time” to reprieve from social pressures. Some people may say that small vacations from peer pressure is not significant enough to reduce its negative effects, but it seems that taking small breathers remind people of their individuality.
Even though determined individuals are able to resist conformity, the average person even succumbs to pressures from their own family. One of the strongest factors in conformity is the pressure from your own family. People in families: moms, dads, brothers, and or sisters all have important roles or jobs that partake in families. In which are also the individuals in one’s life that can be trusted or followed which, also means that it will often dictate on the person to conform to society by following their peers.
The movie “Happy Feet” directed by George Miller, Judy Morris, and Warren Coleman conflicts with Mumble, a penguin that has both internal and external problems between him and his family through his talents. The penguins of his committee, including his own family, are deemed with extraordinary singing talents while Mumble has no inquiry of this talent at all. Because of this, his family and friends try to repair this problem by teaching him to sing because they saw this non-talented penguin, Mumble, to be outrageously unacceptable.
However, as the story goes on, Mumble discovers that since he cannot sing, he realizes that he is a phenomenal dancer. Moreover, penguins of Mumble’s community looked down upon Mumble because they are used to seeing a “normal” penguin singing instead of an “untalented” penguin roaming about the Arctic spreading uninfluenced dancing. As more penguins tuned more attention towards Mumble, they unknowingly enjoy this talent Mumble has and start to try it for themselves.
Not realizing the situation, Mumble in actuality has conformed a whole society into something that the community thought was “ridiculous and a waste of time”, into something that captures the attention of the whole media in order for them to raise awareness for the poorly fed penguins. In families, some are treated poorly and have no influence of a leading role model, thus leaving their decision to non-conforming standing strong-willed.
However, in order for them to be successful in life, one must work to gather money to self sustain themselves with clothes, food, and security; which is done by the organization of work. In work, one must act a particular way in order for them to keep their job by respecting customers, bosses, and coworkers. Like most workers, they usually have bosses, and those bosses also have bosses as well. Head of organizations control or impose rules that workers should follow to meet the criteria of a workplace.
For example, some bosses hire people that only have similar likings instead of credibility some individuals have to offer. In some instances, sometimes these high authority people will not hire others because it is simply by their appearance or how they behave on a daily basis. Due to this, people must undergo change to look “clean” or “healthy” look in which is also conforming because they are being forced to be doing something that helps appeases society. Disregarding bosses, rules also pressure the choice of conforming. With rules, society must obey with determined mindsets in order to keep peace with others.
Without these guidelines however, all things created on Earth would be “out of line” and “chaotic” in which no one will be safe outside their homes. With workers following these guidelines in work- it forces them to act in high dependent proper etiquette individuals that society will accept. In conclusion, all factors of these organizations are used to conform others into society. Through Leopard Man, Feyes asserts that some should be non-conformists sometimes in hope to take a break from society and be by oneself to know that everything is all right in the world.
In families, they are big factors by the leading role models whether its by mothers, fathers, brothers, sister, uncles, or aunties; they could often help conform one since they are so trustable in an individual’s life. Lastly, in work, individuals are imposed on law that makes them act a particular way in which is conforming them because they are obeying laws that society is used to seeing. While there are many individuals who stay strong in opposition towards conformity, Leopard Man, the atmosphere of school, and organization of work can definitely dictate a person’s decision to conform to society.