ENGL 1102 Colorado State University Akeelah and the Bee Essay Please view the samples attached for guidance on how the essay should be written
I have attached my outline and thesis Noah Evans
Professor S. Rose
29 October 2019
Equilibrium, a sci-fi action film written and directed by Kurt Wimmer released in late
2002, it is a movie about John Preston (Christian Bale) who plays the main protagonist. Preston
is known as a Cleric, a distinguished government official, whose sole job is to eliminate Sense
Offenders to maintain the peace. This movie is set in a dystopian future after the Third World
War where the regime or nation known as Libria has succeeded in eliminating war at the cost of
what they believed caused wars, human emotion. Emotions such as love, hate, anger, or any
emotion that makes humans feel are suppressed using a drug called Prozium. Every individual
who lives in this society is required to take this drug on a daily basis if not they become Sense
Offenders and will begin to feel, which is punishable by death. Also, objects such as books, art,
and music are prohibited because of what of what makes the human race people, our emotions.
Through the films use of power and authority, it provides a deeper connection to the statement it
makes about the portrayals of ruling governments in modern society being detrimental to society,
specifically the totalitarian systems that exercise complete control over their citizens.
The citizens in Libria are subject to utter manipulation by the Tetragrammaton council,
the ruling body in the movie. They are led by someone named the Father who uses propaganda
and censorship to lead the people under a false pretense that what the council doing is right
without question. For example, some of the tactics employed are constant speeches which are on
repeat given by the Father in which he says things such as, the disease is human emotion, but
Libria, I congratulate you, there is a cure for this disease When in fact this cure is just a
ploy to keep their citizens in line. This type of indoctrination is the same in countries like North
Korea who use similar propaganda for the same reason stated above. Except in North Korea,
there are posters put out on the streets in which one may depict the image of the White House
being crushed by a North Korean solider. With captions that read, Fight compulsion with hard
hits, punishment and ruthless payback.(Kuroski 2019). This constant drivel from their
government allows for the manipulation of its people by making them believe that this
propaganda is right. If one was to relate to this Libria, what are the people living in this society
supposed to do when their own government is telling them what to think and how to act? For
each instance speaking out against the regime means some sort of punishment, in Libria it means
death and in North Korea it means jail time. That is what makes the totalitarian system so
dangerous for the people that reside in these countries. They have no form of free speech or
thought. It is all dominated by the governments iron fist employing a zero tolerance for basic
human rights. Societies in this position can never know true freedom if all they have ever known
is the brainwashing schemes used by the authorities.
In Libria, the people have access to things that only the government wants them to see.
For example, since all form of books are banned the children learn from reading material created
by the Tetragrammaton council. In like manner, this type of censorship is utilized in China for
their residents. Although, the censorship is not as extreme like in the movie, the people are still
blocked from using multiple forms of media outlets and sites. Websites such as Google, popular
social media apps like Facebook, and all forms of news made based in the western hemisphere
are prohibited for viewing. These media outlets are perceived as a threat to the Chinese
government and in turn they will not allow it within the countrys borders. Libria had the same
intention in mind for their population. The council was afraid of what would happen if its
population started receiving information not distributed by the government. What if the people
were able to receive such information? Growth is exactly what would happen. Governments like
the Chinese want its people to stay stagnant in a world that is continuously changing. In reality
the same media outlets it has blocked plays a huge role in this change. The Chinese government
wants total command over the internet even when its citizens disagree. Chinese citizens are
unable to voice a range of criticism that Americans undoubtedly take for granted each and every
day. Chinese citizens that Tweet about local corruption may face the threat of abuse or
harassment. (United States, Congressional-Executive Commission on China.) With this in mind,
the government does not sympathize with its inhabitants not even allowing the slightest of
constructive criticism. The Chinese government is looking through a one-way glass while the
residents are banging on the other side with cries of change.
If there is one thing totalitarian governments have in common, it is their use of power and
authority to dominate their citizens. In the movie, John Preston took on it upon himself to be the
person everybody in the society wanted to be under Librias rule. They wanted to have emotions,
love another, and speak out using their own opinions, but why did they not? The
Tetragrammaton council instilled a sense of fear within the hearts and minds of the people. Any
type of backlash against the council meant certain death regardless of the reason. The council
was absolute. Correspondingly, the governments similar to Libria in todays world have the same
type of ideology. They use their power to force the people into a cage making it almost
impossible for them to get out. Once they have the people trapped, then they employ a set of
laws or rules that further enforce exactly how they want the citizens to act. To the outside eye, it
is almost like a methodical plan with outright oppression being the end goal. Ultimately, a
government of this nature is unmistakably harmful to the people that reside in such a society.
Wimmer, Kurt, director. Equilibrium. Dimension Films, 2002.
Chinas Censorship of the Internet and Social Media [Electronic Resource] : The Human Toll
and Trade Impact: Hearing before the Congressional-Executive Commission on China,
One hundred Twelfth Congress, First Session, November 17, 2011. Washington : U.S.
Kuroski, John. A Fascinating, Brutal Look At 60 Years Of North Korean Propaganda Against The
United States. All That’s Interesting, All That’s Interesting, 2 May 2019,
July 16, 2020
Paper Topic: _____Akeelah and the Bee_________________________ Audience: __________
The girl child’s success is distracted by the various factors most girls face at a young age. The
challenge of having a single parent who is less supportive becomes even more overwhelming and
may lead to failure to attain self-actualization. The challenges faced by children from the
poverty-oriented background may lead to low self-esteem leading to the inability to reach their
goals. The film Akeelah and the Bee illustrates the major challenges girls face and how some
girls have to go against so many odds from community and family to achieve their goals.
Hardships are common among African- American children that grow up in single-parent
household due to stereotypes and judgements, as illustrated in the film Akeelah and the Bee.
Main Point: Poverty
a). A clear is an eleven-year-old girl who is surrounded by poverty.
Akeelah is talented, but her talent is threatened by the lack of support of her environment.
b). Most African American girls receive little help from the parents to work on their abilities and
abilities due to poverty (Boyd-Franklin, 9).
Due to poverty, Akeelah’s mother works for long hours, having little time for her family, leading
to Akeelah and siblings to lack parental support.
c). Poverty is seen as a challenge that many African American girls have to deal with. Poverty
abstracts girls’ talented nature from reaching their best version since it was through assistance
from other parties that lead Akeelahs success in the spelling challenge, not her family (BoydFranklin, 9).
Main Point: Lack of father figure and role models
a). Akeelah lacks a father since her father died. The lack of a father figure leads to bad
parenthood to Akeelah since her mother ignores her.
b). The only father figure in Akeelah’s life is her brother, who is in the military but has the wrong
company; hence Akeelah doesn’t have someone to act on behalf of her father.
c). Akeelah has her mother busy working; therefore, she is not well nurtured. Her brother is in a
bad gang while the sister is a teenage mom, therefore no one to look up to. Many African
American girls living in poverty stricken areas have very few people to look up to, thus the
reasons why it can be difficult to excel.
Main Point: Stereotyping
a). The American girls receive little trust from people, and many believe that they are not meant
to be successful.
Akeelah is smart, but no one believes that African American girls can be talented like her. Even
the school Principal threatened an Akeelah the reasons why she chooses to participate in
avoidance of detention.
b). Akeelah wins in the spelling bee participation, which finds everyone by surprise since
everyone believes that African American girls could not win the challenge.
c). Due to the perception most people in Akeelah school have, she is afraid of participating in the
spelling bee challenge would lead to more isolation as many people believed that she was a
Main Point: Lack of opportunity and Support
a) It was by surprise that Akeelah won the spelling bee participation; it meant that Akeelah had
the challenge; hence it was only the lack of opportunity that had her talent hidden for a long time
b) Most girls in African American backgrounds are overcome by the insecurities caused by the
many challenges they face.
c). Akeelah only discovers that she is talented when she wins the spelling Bee participation.
Many girls never understand the level of their potential, hence ending up being like Akeelah’s
sister, a teenage mother.
Reworded Thesis (Usually found near the beginning of the conclusion):
African American children face various challenges in their environment, which obstructs them
from gaining their full potential from their abilities and talent.
Other Ideas to Conclude:
Many young African American Families have their dreams sabotaged due to the stereotyping
that occurs and lack of opportunities.
Akeelah is only among the few African American Girls who get the opportunities to realize their
talents and abilities and get the right support and opportunities to pursue their dreams.
Boyd-Franklin, Nancy. Black families in therapy: Understanding the African American
experience. Guilford Publications, 2013.
Ellison, James W. Akeelah and the Bee. Australia Books, 2011.
The 2019 spine-tingling thriller Us, directed by Jordan Peele, flooded social media at
its release– many interpretations and comparisons to his previous movie Get Out filled Twitter
timelines. The movie focused on a family that discovered they have tethered parallels of
themselves living underground, and killed them in the tethereds rebellious uprising. Jordan
Peeles Us is an allegorical narrative of the dangers of capitalism and the proletariat revolt.
Us is understood to represent the societal problems in the United States, as the title is a
double entendre of the abbreviation of United States, and as Peele stated to CNN, the very
nature of us means there is a them whatever your us is, we turn them into the enemy, and
maybe we are our worst enemy (France). This provides an insight that perhaps danger is not
foreign and unknown, but rather instilled in the people that have a fear of the danger. This is
done so symbolically through doppelgangers in the film that appear to be different, but are exact
replicas. The film is symbolic of capitalisms downsides and illustrates phenomena in The
Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx. This 1848 famous piece of work that still applies to
todays societal problems emphasizes that there is an inevitable risk of the working class
revolting against the rich, and that political power, properly so called, is merely the organized
power of one class for oppressing the other (Marx). The United States is a capitalist country, in
which proletariats in the working social class are trapped under the bourgeoisie. This is depicted
in Us when Adelaide, the main character, plots to escape the misery of tethered life through
using the 1986 Hands Across America anti-poverty campaign (McDonald).
Essentially, Adelaides diabolical double replaced her in the real world and was forced
into a life of no sunshine, no agency, no culture, [and] no speech (McDonald). People who are
forced to work 9-5 jobs, that dream of better lives compare to the exaggerated tethered doubles
in Us. They create plans to overthrow their better-off doubles that are physically above them.
The inevitable proletariat revolt shall occur when the bourgeoisie produces its own gravediggers. Its fall and the victory of the proletariat are equally inevitable (Marx). The Workers of
the World, Unite! philosophy is brought to modern-day terms through the incorporation of the
Hands Across America campaign to unify the United States in the film.
The tethered, a name that means tied up, revolt by each carrying a pair of scissors to
kill their double. The scissors are an essential symbol, as the violent bloodshed of killing their
subliminally privileged counterparts completes the figurative aspect of cutting the ties that keep
them chained at the bottom. As they complete their task, each of the red-jumpsuit wearing
doubles lock hands with each other, to create a chain of people that stretches across the United
States. The fear that instills in the people above ground in the thriller compares to the ruling
class that Marx describes to tremble at a revolution [that] the proletarians have nothing to
lose but their chains. They have a world to win.
The tethered break the cold, tight chains of being at the bottom and figuratively turn it
into a new, unified chain that brings them together. In the contrasting views of a socialist on
capitalism, the proletariat are oppressed, controlled by an authoritarian regime via state
control of politics (Oppression). The thrillers violence reflects that the proletariats have no
compassion and ask no compassion from [the bourgeoisie] … when [their] turn comes, [they]
shall not make excuses for the terror (Marx). The resistance of authority creates a bond and
unity that is symbolized through the hand-in-hand illustrations, despite the violence and
merciless revolution that has occurred.
Us merely holds up a mirror to the capitalist U.S to expose its flaws being hidden from
the world. It is an exaggerated but rather articulate film that simply states that this extreme
capitalism will inevitably result in the billionaire investors demise and the rise of the working
class. Chains meant to trap the lower and middle class in societal oppression will be broken, and
new chains will be formed by the unity that results from the proletariat revolution. Social classes
are a detrimental social construct because realistically, nobody is above anothereverybody is
human. Power that money holds is an illusion, as the real power is in the strength of numbers and
France, Lisa Respers. About That ‘Us’ Ending… CNN, Cable News Network, 25 Mar. 2019,
Marx, Karl, 1818-1883. The Communist Manifesto. London; Chicago, Ill.: Pluto Press, 1996.
McDonald, Soraya Nadia. Free to Be You and Me. Film Comment, vol.55, no. 3, May 2019,
pp. 44-47. EBSCOhost,
Oppression. Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 24 Oct. 2019,
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