Always Running

Social Stratification in Always Running College

Always Running, by Luis Rodriguez, boldly addresses multiple sociological themes that embody the entirety of the story. Rodriguez’s social construction of reality was predetermined by society’s expectations on him due to his race, socioeconomic background and upbringing, and his education. Because of these aspects of his life, his past had no story and his current actions and future were already set up to fail, falling into the stereotype of a “drug taking, violent gang member,” with no other possible options. According to Society: The Basics, by John Macionis, both culture and social class shape the reality people construct. Social construction of reality is “the process by which people creatively shape reality through social interaction,” (Macionis, 120). Luis Rodriguez’s interactions with schoolmates, gang members, teachers, and police officers have shaped the way he views himself in retrospective to society. Each interaction places Rodriguez in an immovable place, where he is stereotyped. The theme of social stratification and social construction of reality interact together to create a recurring theme throughout Always Running through Rodriguez’s upbringing and gang experience, his schooling and jobs, his interactions with...

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