Change Does Not Roll in on the Wheels of Inevitability

March 30, 2017
By , harare, Zimbabwe

“Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle.”


The process of transition can be challenging as ‘change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability’, but requires a great deal of struggle to achieve your goals. The character should have the courage and determination to overcome many obstacles such as poverty, society norms of masculinity (attitudes) and having the basic skills to move from one phase of life to the other. Stephen Daldry affirms this concept in the movie, ‘Billy Elliot’ through the protagonist Billy and his attempts to succeed as a ballet dancer in a world dominated by boxing. Rudyard Kipling also demonstrates that you should have the determination to overcome the attitudes and the influences of the society to move from one phase life to the other in the poem ‘If.’


The process of transition can be difficult and requires courage and determination for ‘change does not come easily and roll on the wheels of inevitability but comes through continuous personal struggle.’ This is shown in the film as Billy needs the courage to overcome the obstacles of poverty and misfortune. For instance, the family, not only does not have a mother but is involved in a mining strike for better pay and conditions. These socio-economic hardships are significantly shown as the barriers for Billy as it means he needs to take responsibility for looking after his senile grandmother. The family cannot afford anything extra for Billy to pursue his dreams. We see this in the opening scene which Billy will be calling Nana in the grass but especially in the scene where they smash the Xmas scene where they smash the piano for firewood which is a symbolism poverty, a way of survival and nothing extra like music to have. Billy shows his determination by not letting poverty to stop him, at first, he learns how to dance from stealing library books and then he meets Mrs Wilkinson who provides him with the real opportunities to break through the barriers of his poor and disadvantaged situation. This is shown in the scene in which Billy being given free dancing lessons. Therefore, to succeed towards your goals you should break free the socio-economic status.


Change cannot be acquired easily but comes through a great deal of struggle which involves challenging the society norms, economic hardships and moving against the society setup up expectations. An individual should have the courage and determination to challenge the economic hardships of the mine strike and the social norms of masculinity and the community setup of gender stereotypes. These political and social influences are significantly shown as the barriers for both Billy and his father, Jackie through their phase of transition. Daldry shows this through Jackie’s breakdown scene which clearly indicates the experience of negative emotions as he realises he is responsible for ensuring Billy’s future as a dancer. Jackie then goes against the purpose of striking campaign ‘crossing the picket line’ in which he and Tony participate in, and goes back to the mines to find money showing his transition and challenging the socio-economic influences. Jackie had to go against the social norms of the orthodox of masculinity and the economic hardships of the mine strike due to the collapsing economy. He is presented determined to overcome these barriers through sacrifice when he sold his deceased wife’s jewellery which represents its self as a major sacrifice as he is presented as being discomfort. As you can see it takes courage, sacrifice and determination to transition into a new phase of life.


The perseverance of a character can inspire them to challenge the negative attitudes of the society to move into a new world for it is difficult to attain your goals. You should have the perseverance and determination to confront and overcome the social obstacles of the orthodox of masculinity and the community setup of gender stereotypes. The Visual humorous shots are used to show how Billy is being mocked and criticised as being, ‘a disgrace to those boxing gloves and the traditions of this boxing hall’ which signifies his failure to as what is expected of a man.  Jackie’s is then viewed in shock and anger which is the evident of his monosyllabic demand, “You out” when he enters the ballet class. The confrontation between Billy and Jackie with his stereotypical attitudes, “lads do football, wrestling or boxing not fringing ballet” and the confrontation between Tony and Mrs Wilkinson’s when Billy finally said, “I don’t want a childhood. I want to be a ballet dancer.” This shows Billy struggling to overcome the negative attitude in his transition into his journey as a ballet dancer. Therefore, having perseverance is important when overcoming negative attitudes and moving into a new phase of life.
Determination, courage and perseverance are the keys for the doors to be in a new phase of life. Rudyard Kipling reflects this in the poem If that you should have these keys to overcome the negative attitudes and the influence of the society which can hold you from achieving your goals. To move into a new phase of life Rudyard views that should struggle the socio-economics hardships in the poem ‘If’ through a metaphor ‘and never breath a word about your loss’ which is also demonstrated by Daldry in the film when Jackie crossed the picket line to support Billy’s dream of being a ballet dancer. This shows the utmost element of determination to overcome obstacles that prevent you from succeeding in life which is also reflected in Billy Elliot movie. Kipling also demonstrates that you should struggle to hold on your values to challenge the obstacles such as the influences of the society with symbols ‘foes’ and ‘friends’ representing the society in the same way as, ‘if neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you.’ It is also shown through a close-up shot in the scene when Billy take risking showing Jackie in the boxing hall that he is talented in dancing. This reflects that you should not allow the social influences such as the orthodox of masculinity preventing you from achieving your dreams but you should challenge these social influences to succeed. Therefore, to succeed in your life you should never give up but struggle towards your goals regardless of the socio-economic hardships of attitudes, beliefs and poverty.


However, the process of transition can be challenging for it does not roll on the wheels of inevitability but comes through a great deal of struggle to achieve your goals. As you can see that it involves overcoming the socio-economic hardships of negative attitudes, poverty and misfortune, and a great deal of struggle to acquire the change that suits your new phase of life. Therefore, to succeed towards your goals you should break free the socio-economic status, struggle to acquire the skills and have the perseverance to overcome the obstacles.






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