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Interpersonal Conflict Essay

665 words - 3 pages

The film Crash, includes so many interpersonal conflicts it is difficult to know which one to choose, as there are not only so many but so many that are not handled effectively. Rick Cabot and his wife Jean where car-jacked early in the movie, this car-jacking was not taken well by either of them but particularly by Jean. The car-jacking revealed racial bias or outright prejudice and lack of trust on Jeans part when a Hispanic locksmith comes to change the locks on their house because they’re car keys would give the car-jacker’s access to their house. Jean tells Rick that she thinks that the lock smith is going to have his gang come back and rob the house. She attributes him being gang affiliated due to his shaved head and multiple tattoos. Rick is passive in this conflict and his resolution is more to calm Jean than to point out her flawed way of thinking, mainly her racial bias towards the locksmith and the fact that the car-jacking was likely an isolated ...view middle of the document...

He makes no effort to confront Jean on her racial bias towards the locksmith.

Rick should have immediately identified Jeans flawed thought process and racial bias. Though this would likely have led to greater confrontation between the two of them, she needed to see the error in her way of thinking. Racial bias, and unwarranted fear of other races is not acceptable in erodes the very fabric of society, not to mention hurts those being discriminated against. Rick letting Jean continue to think that just because someone has tattoos, is Hispanic and has a shaved head is gang related and going to come back in rob them is foolish. Rick should have took a more assertive approach and stood his ground in a confrontation to allow Jean to see the error of her way of thinking. This interpersonal conflict between Rick and Jean could have benefited their relationship by Rick not accepting Jean’s way of thinking about minorities and hopefully further help her recover from the car-jacking. In Making Connections the author cites the study by Noler and Feeney in how conflict can benefit a relationship,
“Conflict can be dangerous because it has a tendency to grow and worsen, but it can also have important benefits that can strengthen a relationship and might even be desirable. For example, no one benefits from random hostility; however, in their studies of marriage interaction, researchers Patricia Noller and Judith Feeney (2002) reported that some conflict may actually be good for a marriage over time and can lead to the personal growth of both parties—if the negative communication is aimed at the other person's specific behavior and not at the whole person.” (Sole, 2011)

Rick and Jean’s interpersonal conflict might not be able to be resolved amongst them, as the car-jacking was traumatic to Jean and with her showing little signs of resiliency to the incident along with the racial biased undertones, an outside mediator and assistance such as a counselor might be the best route.

Sole, K. (2011). Making Connections – Understanding Interpersonal Communication. Retrieved from

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