The Blurring of The 8220;i” And 8220;me”

In this scene of the 1997 film Liar Liar, Jim Carrey’s character is forced to go before the executive board of the law firm he works for and give his honest opinion of his superior. The whole premise of the movie is that due to his son’s birthday wish, Carrey cannot tell a lie. This includes the seemingly innocent white lies that people tell on a daily basis. As a result of this, Carrey bares his sincere and painfully honest opinions of everyone in the boardroom. These opinions are obviously offensive and the whole time Carrey wishes he could lie about how he actually feels.

This situation is a perfect example of Mead’s “I”. Carrey is forced to tell the truth and cannot abide by the traditional social norm of keeping offensive opinions to one’s self. By keeping these opinions private and individual is able to put forward the “Me” which is the socialized identity of a person. Carrey, however, has no choice but to reveal the “I” which is comprised of all of his feelings and ideas independent from social input. This scene also acts as an example of the front stage and back stage mixing during a performance. The descriptions of his superiors are obviously things that he would save for backstage performances between other employees and not the people he is talking about. His inability to lie causes this line between front and back stage to blur.

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