Social Conform

Sherri Schumacher
English 101
Tues. & Thurs. 1:30-3:10
Social Conform

Everyone has wanted to fit in or be part of a group at some point in their lives. Some, so much so, that they are even willing to change their beliefs, appearances, or family customs just to “fit in” or be “normal”.   Not just our generation, but generations before us have all strived to fit into a group. The young men in the story’s “Sixty- Nine Cents” and “My First Conk” are all dealing with a similar issue of “fitting in”.  
In My First Conk a young Malcolm X decides to get a conk, a hairstyling process in which you apply chemicals to the scalp to make the hair straight, in order to have “white man’s hair”. He does this even though it causes him pain and burns his scalp. We still do things like this today to our bodies in order to fit in to certain groups. Some people get tattoos, others get piercings, and some even go as far as getting cosmetic surgery or Botox.
In Sixty-Nine cents a young Russian boy wants so badly to be American. He works to get rid of his accent and he wants the American dream; a girl to say she likes him, to eat at McDonalds every day, and to go to Florida.   He even gets angry at his family for not following the customs of our country, be eating leftover home cooked Russian food while at Mc. Donald’s. The parents even go as far as using the free napkins and straws. This boy wants to fit in so badly he wishes his family would change to conform to the norms of society. He was even happy to get rid of his accent so he could fit in.
So why do people feel the need to change to fit into social norms? People are no longer happy about their differences. Everyone just wants to fit in.   Have you ever changed something about who you were in order to be accepted? I know I have. I have worn glasses my entire life since I was 6 months old. In Junior High I remember I used to take my glasses off as soon as I got to the school because I didn’t want to be picked...