Muted Group Theory
Pant set us this assignment she told us that we could choose any topic at all that she has touched upon in class and we have to note our response to it. It does not need to be a theory only. I read the theories and had Initially thought that I would Like to comment on how men are forced to conform to certain stereotypes and at times have to bottle up their emotions to ensure they are accepted by the people around them. However, 2 days before the submission date, I was casually browsing the internet when I came across the below advertisement.
It aught my attention, forcing me research and reflect on it thus completely changing my topic. The ad for a Jewelry brand shows high carat diamonds and other precious stones which along with the kind of clothes that the models are wearing and the usage of English language shows that it is aimed at affluent and educated families. The ad shows the woman echoing the thought that ‘l did not choose my husband but I can choose my Jewelry.
or any similar topic only for you
This to me dispels the notion that some of us have, which Is that only certain rural and attacked’ classes actually have limitations put on their redeem of choice.
That educated people In urban areas have the luxury of being able to make the decision of the magnitude of choosing one’s life partner. Yes, It Is a luxury. No, even many of the financially rich cannot afford it at times. In my experience this luxury has little to do with finances. In fact most of the financially well-off families that I know or have heard off, have more restrictions than those that belong to middle class ‘service’ families.
Most of my friends that come from high income ‘business’ families have been conditioned to do whatever they want in life, hey have the best of facilities and freedom to do whatever they want, Except choose a life partner belonging to a significantly different economic background than themselves. For some of them even the person Is chosen by the parents, not on the merits of the person, rather on his/her formally business and finances. The concept of using marriage for forming stronger business or political alliances Is not new.
The marriage between McHugh emperor Kafka with the Ragout princess Soda was a marriage of alliance. My wife and I have picked out the perfect spouse for my son. They have developed a wonderful relationship together over the years, with great chemistry and warmth. She comes from a family that has identical values and priorities to ours and would make wonderful in-laws. They are both 9 years old. I (Bussing, 2011) Jeff Bussing was uses this real life incident that he came across to further talk about arranged marriages in business and specifically in entrepreneurship.
Movies like Kabuki Sushi Kabul Sham (2001), Arthur (1981 and 2011), Dialed Outlandish El Cayenne (1995) etc. Have highlighted this practice over the years. Kabuki Slush Kabuki Sham showed a very wealthy family’s patriarch who was educated, well mannered, generous and a loving family man, but when the decision of his son’s marriage comes up his sentiments are that his son does not need to be Involved In the decision of his marriage. When his wife tries to suggest that the son should be consulted in this She is finally silenced with a ‘Eke day an… Bas eke day’ which translates to ‘Vie said so…
That’s it’. No further discussion required. Arthur, the drunk heir to his family’s fortunes has every conceivable luxury available, as long as he agrees to marry a wealthy heiress of his family’s choosing. He falls in love with a ‘common working class girl’ which is unacceptable to his grandmother. She threatens to disown him from the family fortune if he does not marry the wealthy heiress she chose. Dialed Outlandish El Cayenne has the family patriarch who had fixed his daughters marriage to his friend’s son in the infancy of both the children itself.
The family since moved to a different continent and the children have grown up in environments that are poles apart with no contact with each other. But when the girl finishes her higher education she is expected to accept marrying the man without even meeting him first. This is not to say the parents don’t care about their children, they care deeply. They Just assume that they know better than their children. Here the parents hold the power and act out the role of the Dominant group as per the Muted Group theory and the children form the Muted group.
The Muted Group Theory (MGM) was put forward by anthropologists Shirley and Edwin Arden and was further elaborated by Cherish Kramer and others like Robe, Herring, Radii Copra etc. The dominant group does not intentionally silence the muted group; they may not even realist they are doing so till it is explicitly pointed out to them. Most Muted groups tend to try to speak, but their words fall on deaf ears. When this happens continually over a period of time, they ‘lose their voice’. Losing their voice means not Just the ability to spell out opinions.
It goes deeper; they accept things as they are and to them will always be and stop thinking about it altogether. The Just quietly do what they are told to do. Another interpretation of the Muted Group Theory was put forward by Emily Hartley in her research paper titled ‘Muted Group Theory Application in the Indiana Wesleyan University Theatre Program’. (Hartley, 2012) She applied the MGM to her the universities theatre program and found that the theatre students were being ‘muted’ by the conservative institute which had strict rules about censorship.
Since most plays contained some or the other ‘bad’ language they were not allowed to stage those productions. There were also several other factors that were contributing to the silencing process such as the Theatre advisory board, the faculty, the administrative and financial policies. All of this was curtailing the artistic expression of the students which can demoralize and limit intellectual growth. This is not to say that things cannot be changed. There are many ways to unmet a muted group. Some strategies that have been found to be effective are: 1.
Calling out and attaching nomenclature to the methods used for silencing the muted groups. Making the dominant groups realizes that they are silencing the others. 2. Celebrating the things that others use to suppress the muted groups with. Egg: LIGHT community taking pride in their sexuality and holding parades. 3. Creating a new language that is more suitable to the muted group capable of reflecting the opinions they want to express. Egg: movies, painting, an actual language, computer mediated communication etc.