The Breakfast Club (1985), displays many stereotypes of adolescents, which are more commonly referred to as irrational teenagers. The adolescents cannot help their behaviors, to an extent, as it is all biological. They are merely trying to figure out their identities, and need to experiment with their superiors in that time. Their hormone levels are changing, helping them transition from children to adults. Imaginary Audience As adolescents, the group in detention all have the mentality of an imaginary audience.
By thinking that the world is looking at hem on a pedestal, the teenagers feel more self-conscious or feel more compelled to be noticed as if on stage (Santrock, 2008). An imaginary audience can be noticed particularly when an action used to reinforce their thinking. John Bender seeks attention to compensate for his feeling of an imaginary audience when he says single word insults to the assistant principle, Vernon. This means that Bender will have more detentions to serve, but he achieves the attention he so desires (Hughes, The Breakfast Club).
Personal Fable Claire Standish creates a personal fable about her life and family hen she is talks about her parents making decisions because they are out to get her and use her to get back at each other. She is self-centered and makes everything about herself. This includes self-pity, and talking about herself being unique; as if no other teenagers are experiencing conflicts with their parents the way she is. Allison reinforces this irrational thinking by snorting at the idea (Hughes, The Breakfast Club).
Personal fables in teenagers make them feel alone and different from everyone else as a way to better help themselves understand ow they fit in society (Santrock, 2008). The entire group also takes a point while talking together to gloat about themselves. Once they are all realizing that they all have their own struggles, they take turns telling each other about their personal skills that make them useful (Hughes, The Breakfast Club).
Each teenager wants to feel as if they are important, which is why their personal fable often develops, to help compensate for their low self-esteem of developing adolescents (Santrock, 2008). Maria’s Statuses Marcia’s classifications of identity status are based on crisis and onflict, and whether they are present or not (Santrock, 2008). Allison faces identity diffusion, as both are absent. She has not experienced a large crisis, and has no commitment to a particular identity.
She fears what she may face if she were to run away, yet she shows up to detention because she has nothing better to do. This has likely been influenced by the way that her parents do not give her much attention, and do not provide much of a challenge to choose what to be (Hughes, The Breakfast Club). Andrew faces identity moratorium (Santrock, 2008), as he has committed to the lifestyle of a star athlete, or o he thinks. Andrew is struggling now to decide if he is happy with this lifestyle or is doing it just to please his father.
He has realized this when his father was not impressed with Andy’s pranking behavior (Hughes, The Breakfast Club). The other two of Marcia’s identities are identity diffusion and identity achievement. Eventually, everyone in the group will hopefully reach identity achievement by committing to an identity after going through a crisis (Santrock, 2008). Andy has already passed through identity diffusion, when he did not realize his ommitment to an athlete persona, and did not question who he was (Hughes, The Breakfast Club).
Juvenile Delinquency Bender, the bad boy, shows a lot of prospects for being a juvenile delinquent. Juvenile delinquency is described as adolescents who, on multiple occurrences, break the law or spend time participating in illegal behavior. (Santrock, 2008). Bender pulled a fire alarm to get sentenced to detention. Considering that males are more likely to be delinquents than females, and also to have difficulties in relationships. Even between the not so close friends, Bender has trouble speaking o others in an appropriate manner.
He also comes from an abusive home, and lives in a society where people doubt that he is abused (Hughes, The Breakfast Club). It’s likely he is from a lower socioeconomic status (low-SES culture), to help explain his tough and masculine attitude (Santrock, 2008), ease of accepting punishment, negative behavior such as marijuana use (Hughes, The Breakfast Club). Bender, however, does not show that he only can have delinquency behavior. He likely displays this behavior to help cope with internal conflicts about how to deal with his family nd for attention.
Bender also makes a point to get into more trouble to help the rest of the group get back to the library, and when tempted by Vernon, he knows to not talk or punch him (Hughes, The Breakfast Club), showing that he still cares for others, and potentially would like to stop his attitude and cease to be judged for some things which he cannot control. It is important that this is on multiple occasions and intentionally, not just to experiment and try to be rebellious, as all of the students smoke marijuana to “let loose” while in detention Hughes, The Breakfast Club).
While the drug use is illegal, this is not juvenile delinquency as most of them do not do this regularly, or this is their only negative behavior (Santrock, 2008). Depression All of the students seem to show some signs of depression. In adolescence, depression signs vary from difficulties with relationships, to rejection from peers (Santrock, 2008). Each of the adolescents have trouble with either their parents or other students. Claire struggles with her parents, as does Andrew. Claire for the fact that her parents constantly fight, but Andrew or the pressure of filling a cutout of what his parents seem to expect from him.
Bender cannot connect well with other eeling of alienation from others, and continuing students because of his failing relationship with his abusive father. Allison also does not connect well with students as she has a mind of her own. She does not fit with the stereotypical teenager type, so she gets frustrated with others when she does not get attention, especially from her parents. She even wants to run away and escape (Hughes, The Breakfast Club). Allison shows some of the greatest signs of silent depression because f her desire to leave her current life (Santrock, 2008).
The only one who exhibits and expresses his depression is Brian, who had a flare gun, but was planning on killing himself. His planning of attempting suicide was due to his parent’s pressure to get good grades (Hughes, The Breakfast Club). Adolescents are highly impressionable, and when they are under the impression that they are not perfect and are instead vulnerable, negative consequences such as depression occur. Conclusion The breakfast club group of adolescents feel challenged in who they are, and alone in their own worlds.
By spending the Saturday together, they learn that they are not alone, and “grow up” a little by starting to understand that others their age are going through the same conflicts that they are, just presented in slightly different ways. All adolescents face a challenge of answering the question of who they are, and how they should be themselves. Despite this being a natural struggle, it is not an easy one; but most of the adolescents will overcome this challenge, figure out who they are, why they want what they do, and see that they are not completely alone.