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SOC 1100. "Sci-Fi & Me" Essays
PART 1: Science-Fiction
Technological advancement in society is meant to positively influence carrying out
activities and the betterment of life quality. However, this is not always the case since
technological space is open to hijacking selfish individuals for their gain. Society is a beneficiary
of technology and at the same time a victim of the uncontrolled greed, manipulation and
inhumane acts of its members who exploit technology for their selfish interests. Whereas
technological advancement will improve the quality of life, there is an existing threat from
differences in social groups that only act for their groups and not for the general humanity. This
assertion is better demonstrated by the science-fiction movies “In Time” and “Gattaca.”
In the movie "In Time," a highly technologically advanced society is featured where
human beings have defied the ageing law of nature through technology where individuals can
live for long. However, this is not the case for all since this benefit of not ageing is not available.
The movie features a future society that has genetically engineered human beings to prevent
ageing. But this is not the case for all since time has been limited only up to twenty-five years for
every individual from which human beings begin to purchase time from businesses. The poor die
when their time is exhausted, while the rich live as much as they can afford to buy living time.
This technology has divided society into groups of the have underprivileged and the wealthy.
The movie “Gattaca," on its part, features a developed society that is advanced in
biogenetic engineering. In the movie, two groups of individuals in the society exist based on
their genetic modifications. The first group of genetically modified individuals is resistant to
genetic disorders, while the second group of naturally born individuals is susceptible to genetic
conditions. The story features a young man in the second group of susceptible individuals and
ailing from some disorders which have limited his time. Society also profiles and groups
individuals based on their state of genetic immunity. Again, in this movie, society is divided into
those who can afford genetic engineering services for their children and the poor who are left to
struggle with ailments.
The two movies present a sociological concept of the impact of technology on society
and the behavioural changes of individuals which accompany this change. Technology is
advantageous, as portrayed in both movies, to enhance the lives of individuals. In the first movie,
age barriers are defied, and individuals can afford to live as much as they want. In the second
movie, media and technology have enabled society to choose and remove hereditary factors
which result in genetic disorders. These are examples of the positive influence of media and
technology in society. The impossibilities created by nature on human life are subdued through
media and technology. In an advanced society, communication is enabled enormously, and
society enjoys defeating common enemies.
However, society is also challenged by the behaviours of individuals from within or the
negative impacts of media and technology. In the two movies, a sharp contrast of the benefits of
media and technology plays out, essentially undermining the overall benefits. Technology,
firstly, has created sharp divisions in society based on wealth and riches. In the first movie, only
the rich can afford to buy life past twenty-five years, and they have done so to the extent of
others stocking for decades to come while the poor struggle to refill their diminishing supplies.
In the second movie, the rich have the benefits of selecting children based on genetic factors,
thus excluding genes susceptible to genetic conditions and increasing their lives. Therefore,
discrimination and social classes are evident characters created by media and technology in
society. Class-based affordability of technology is comparable to forming a digital divide or
knowledge gaps that are avoidable yet still happen.
Technological crimes from capitalistic exploitation of technology to fulfill selfish
interests is also a precarious pattern that the two movies reviewed in this study have displayed.
The rich do not care whether the poor access the same benefits in the society but rather mind
their kin and themselves. In the first movie, the rich have lived for a long and continue to stock
for piles of time to live while the many poor have to tick little time to live. Technology in the
second movie shows the poor who cannot select their genes profiled as invalid, a new dimension
of behaviour not seen before. Technological crimes overtake a noble idea and replace it with
selfish ideas meant to gather wealth for the few in society. Society is unequally aided by the
changes in technology but rather more divided and wider gaps created in socio-economic
features of individuals.
Deviant behaviours and morality or social fragmentation are two sharply divisive topics
created by media and technology. In the first movie, "in time," a character is created who has to
liberate society from this opportunistic model of selling and buying living time. The wealthy
class view the individual as a deviant character while the poor recognize the individual as a
liberator. Society is divided on the opinion of what is morally right and what is morally wrong. Is
it right to steal on behalf of the oppressed poor, or is it more acceptable to conform to society's
values even when they are oppressive? Media and technology are needful yet beg the question of
the morality of the society and what is deemed socially acceptable.
PART TWO: the "Me" component
Technology has made the globe a village interconnected by traditional media, social
media, and more online platforms in the current era. As an individual, my life has greatly
benefitted from media and technology. From the following news at a small device on the palm of
my hands to communicating with friends miles away, technology has positively impacted my
life. In the process, media and technology have influenced my academic life behaviour, moral
characteristics adopted, socialization groups associated with and personal impression through art.
In morals, media and technology combine all kinds of individuals on online platforms
who share and disagree on various issues of morality, which raises the sociological aspect of
value consensus. Most of my behavioural characters are informed by what society deems as
ethically acceptable online by choosing what people who share similar values accept. It is not
right to carry out racial abuses, but they find it fun for some individuals. Having the ability to
discover both sides of the groups through the media gives me the ability to choose based on my
consciousness. Another influence on morals is the word morals itself. Definitions of the word
vary, and society has different views, which I can side with a side that best describes my
The more media and technology are penetrating, the further I find myself integrated into
society's socialization aspect. Through media and technology, there is a possibility of
communicating with individuals from every continent and creating friendships. This particular
part of realizing new places through the media and exploring stories from all over the globe is
part of the sociological concept of socialization. Essentially, through socialization, one can learn
different cultures and distinguish which are progressive to adopt and retrogressive to campaign
against. My life, for instance, is highly influenced by the Chinese culture of mindfulness as a
therapeutic intervention of the mind. While this is not a culture that I grew up with, the
socialization concept better defines socialization as the interaction with friends through media
and technology to promote helpful culture.
The sociological concepts of norms and behaviours in the course study are relatable to
my life in extensive ways. Firstly, as an individual living in a technologically advanced society,
the norms and actions and duties I do throughout the day are greatly changed. Now and then, I
have to check on what is trending on media platforms and follow changes in other parts of the
world. While duties such as purchasing, learning and others have been simplified through
technology. Shopping for items, just like in many parts of the world, is through the internet, and I
have not been left behind in this changing norm. In addition, educational research is currently
done online and too, I am in the group that does research online, download books and journals
and keep soft copies. Therefore, my norms and behaviours have changed as an influence of
media and technology.
Applying the concept of governance and in my life depicts a changing shift of values the
society agrees to be socially acceptable levels of leadership. Personally, before judging a leader
as appropriate or not, I have to check for what others have to say about the particular individual.
For instance, in the recently concluded U.S elections, social perspectives of the two leaders
contesting for the presidency were immensely divided on what each leader advocates. From the
media, I followed the campaign trails and decided which one was better than the other. The
sociological concept of government defines my position as an individual on matters of leadership
influenced by social groups and organizations. These groups have different opinions on various
subjects but tend to agree and disagree on some concepts. Other groups tend to ignore some
values as negligible, whereas in others, the weight attached to these values is enormous. My
decision-making process is thus influenced to side with certain social groups and organizations
when making choices about leadership.
The final sociological concept, which as an individual is the influenced me of media and
technology in my life in religion and spirituality. The availability of deeper information in the
media on different values and beliefs in the society advocated for by different religions has
influenced my choice of what to abide with. For instance, some religions advocate different
roles, rules and regulations for women in society. In this case, I can choose whether to be part of
that social organization. In addition, some religions highlight the need to bear in mind the plight
of the needy in society. Even without being religious, such teachings create logical reasoning of
why as an individual, I should participate in charity groups. Therefore, my values are greatly
influenced by societal groups and organizations and the media and technology to create
individuals who behave, live, exercise, and participate in different ways.
Youtube. "Gattaca." YouTube, 2017, www.youtube.com/watch?v=tzG3I7nMEks.
Youthmovies. "In Me; Sci-Fi/ Action movie." YouTube, 2021,