Clockwork Conditioning Essay by serendipity

Clockwork Conditioning
A review of Stanley Kubrick's film, "A Clockwork Orange".
# 49362 | 1,502 words | 3 sources | MLA | 2004 | US
Published on Mar 04, 2004 in Film (Analysis, Criticism, Etc.)

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This paper discusses how the movie, "Clockwork Orange", is famous for its dystopian take on behavioral conditioning and criminal reform. It looks at how the majority of the plot revolves around the violent tendencies of a savage young English fellow who undergoes drastic aversion conditioning to make him unable to participate in violence, sexuality, and, incidentally, Ludwig Van Beethoven's 9th Symphony. It examines how, in this work based on a book by Anthony Burgess, famed film director Stanley Kubrick explores the ramifications of behavioral therapy itself in terms of free choice and unintended consequences and how he seems to suggest that the idea of solving violence through scientific psychological brain-tinkering is doomed to fail at the hands of real-life stimuli.

From the Paper:

"The film begins by showing Alex, the protagonist, partaking fully in his violent and sexual past-times. This choice, in addition to being artistically necessary, also serves to demonstrate the sort of instrumental learning that Alex had before entering into his reprogramming therapies. According to the basic theories of operant conditioning and thinkers such as Skinner, all of an individuals future actions will be based on whether past actions along those lines have met with positive or negative reinforcement. It is blatantly obvious by observing the early parts of the film that all of Alex's "ultra-violence" has met with very positive reinforcement. Violence is shown to be meeting the majority of his biological and emotional needs in a way that his work-obsessive and nearly non-existent family cannot. Violence has provided him with a way to make money and fulfill his need for drugs and food (such as the milk he drinks at the beginning of the film)."

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