The lottery ofbirth is a sociological theory that states no one can choose the circumstancesinto which they are born. Furthermore, this theory goes onto say that peopleshould not be held responsible for what they are born into. The film The Lottery of Birth takes a look intohow certain things in society shape how we think and even what we do. The filmalso looks at the circumstances that we were born into to correlate how theseconditions affect our thoughts and behaviors. I agree with the concept of thelottery of birth because it is true that you have no control over thecircumstances in which you are born. I also think that the environment that youare born into strongly affects the way you think and what you do.
For instance,a person born into wealth in New York is going to have different thoughts andbeliefs than a person that was born into a poor family in Florida. The film The Lottery of Birth discusses theeducational system by splitting it into two categories: negative and positive.The most important aspect to the learning process is the positive facet;however, the negative side of learning is often inevitable. The film makes arather large claim that the majority of the world is overeducated. The way thevideo explains this is that the educated people of the world expect to be ableto plan their lives and be part of more opportunities. However, these plans areentirely out of their control and this is proven to be true.Work is asignificance discussed in the film TheLottery of Birth.
The film states that most of us have very little controlover the work that we do. While we are employed by other people, we do tasksthat someone else tells us to do. This again makes us have very little controlover our jobs. Another point the film makes is that it is not an employee’s jobto question the employer.
They are simply supposed to show up and work withoutasking questions. The film relates this issue to the men whose job it is todesign nuclear weapons by asking these men if they had any clue that they weremaking the world a deadly place by making these dangerous weapons. The filmsays that employees are “subject to a strict chain of command and closemonitoring” (32:00). When I first started college, I thought I wanted to be anurse because this is what my family told me I wanted to do. They encouraged meto take health classes because this was the field that my parents worked in.
However, now that I am on my own and done with my first semester of college, Ihave changed my mind. I now am working towards a teaching degree with a minorin mathematics. My career goal now is to be an outgoing math teacher who canhelp children get a good education.
By saying this, my point is that theenvironment in which you live can affect your decisions and sometimes whateveryone else thinks you should do is not the right thing. The film discussedthe term bias several times. One author of the film even tells his studentsthat most of what he says is bias because it is his own opinions and beliefs.
The film also discusses how obedience and conformity are crucial to existence. Obedience oftentimes helps situations run smoothly. Conformity can be changing a particular person’sbehavior in order to fit in.
The workplace consists of a concept known asideological conformity. This concept calls for people to conform to thedominant ideology and if they don’t they are considered an outlier (36:10). Thefilm goes onto say that the way people work has more of an impact than the waythat people vote.
Stanley Milgramwas a psychologist at Yale University who conducted a very well-knownexperiment referred to world-wide as the Milgram Experiment. The MilgramExperiment’s main goal was to investigate peoples’ responses to a knownauthority figure. Stanley Milgram wanted to understand how the acts of theHolocaust were allowed to go on and on.
The experiment consisted of a teacherand a learner. Whenever the learner would get a question wrong, the teacher wassupposed to pull a switch which would then send an electrical shock to thelearner or at least this is what they thought. The learner knew they would notbe shocked. The point of Milgram’s experiment was to see how far the teacher wouldgo until they realized that it was unethical.
Before the experiment started, itwas predicted that only one out of one thousand would stay in the experimentuntil the very end. However, almost two-thirds of the teachers stayed until theend which proves that most people answer to an authoritative figure.Many concepts suchas structure, agency, objectivity, conformity, and sociological imaginationrelate to the material presented in the movie The Lottery of Birth. Agency in sociology is how individuals chooseto act independently.