Movie Analysis: Driving Miss Daisy

Aging Process:

Ms. Daisy at 72 (Wealthy with strong Jewish religious background) started strong and imposing in her manners, aware of every details around her until she have that car accident that greatly affected her self-esteem.

She then created a friendship with Mr. Hoke (a black Christian, in a highly segregated and racist community) after being self-protective or suspicious about him. He in transition became a servant, a counselor and confidant. She develops her relationship out of her loneliness considering her son is very caring for her – she eventually became more affectionate of her driver, Mr. Hoke.

The third process is her eventual suffering of mental illness that landed her into a nursing home. The film did not depict the caused and it is assumed or stereotyped that it is part of the process of getting into old age.


Role of Counseling:

Mr. Hoke has some of the distinctiveness of being a good counselor: able to establish good affinity, benevolent, perceptive (considering the setting in the south of strong prejudice and segregation on Jew, Black, etc.). As counselor we should be aware of our patient’s culture, race and religion and be sensitive to their needs.
Religion and spirituality must be tackled in counseling when clients begin to address his spirituality and belief and have an effect on member’s health and influence how both clients and counselor response to the issue of concern, psychologically and physically.

Religious cultural differences with regard to denomination (as well as the beliefs and practices associated with being in a denomination) between client and therapists are likely to exist, particularly for clinical and counseling psychologists (Walker, Gorsuch and Tan, 2004).

Counselor is responsible to explore not only her age but her culture including her religion. Many if not all aspect of religion is very difficult to quantify and as professionals, we look at the obvious and what is proven and not the “invisible” or spirit particularly to diverse minority or people of color and people with strong religious upbringing.

The amount of training that most clinicians undergo within their graduate and professional education is quite extensive. Yet, because much of the training is anchored within the context of a European American psychological perspective, the knowledge base is limited when applied to people of color. This is particularly evident when considering the notion of spirituality (Cervantes and Parham, 2005).


Strength and Struggles:

Ms. Daisy at 72 is capable of honestly communicating her feelings: cynicism and mistrust (towards Mr. Hoke ) and not accepting the fact that she may be in danger of driving her own car. The physicality of Miss. Daisy must be considered in all facet of her ability. She has to recognize the fact that she may not be healthy to drive but this is not to stereotype all elderly at 72 is not capable.

At retirement age (65 yr), there was a stabilizing, or even an improving, tendency in activity patterns, usually followed by further erosion through the final period of life. Strengthening behavior eroded dramatically with advancing age among adults, especially among men. Among adolescents, differences between female and male respondents were large for regular, vigorous activity (11.3 percentage points greater for male respondents). In comparison with female adolescents and adults, male respondents reported much higher rates of regular, sustained activity (5.5 and 5.9 percentage points, respectively), and strengthening (18.2 and 11.3 percentage points, respectively) (Casperen, et al, 2000).

When Mr. Hoke tries to befriend and encouraged rapport with Miss Daisy, she was defensive but in the long run, they develop a good healthy relationship. It is important that Miss Daisy continue to interact with someone to encourage and keep her social skills hale and hearty this in some ways will be nourishing for her.

Evaluation results of the elder wellness program suggest that blood pressure screenings provide community health nurses (CHNs) with unique opportunities to promote wellness in older adults when provided in an atmosphere that encourages nurse-client interactions (Shellman, 2000).

Reference:
Caspersen, C., Pereira M. and Curran, M. (2000). Changes in physical activity patterns in the United States, by sex and cross-sectional age. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc., Vol. 32, No. 9, pp. 1601-1609, Retrieved on December 5, 2000 at: http://www.acsm-msse.org/pt/re/msse/

Cervantes, J and Parham T. (2005). Toward a Meaningful Spirituality for People of Color: Lessons for the Counseling Practitioner. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology by the Educational Publishing Foundation Vol. 11, No. 1, 69 – 81. University of California, Irvine.

Shellman, J. (2000). Promoting Elder Wellness Through a Community-Based Blood Pressure Clinic SO: Public Health Nursing. Retrieved on December 5, 2008 at: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/119186015/abstract

Walker, D., Gorsuch, R., & Tan, S. (2004, October). Therapists' Integration of Religion and Spirituality in Counseling: A Meta-Analysis. Counseling & Values, 49(1), 69-80. Retrieved December 2, 2008, from Academic Search Premier database.

Tony Astro
Two Thumbs Up for the movie Driving Miss Daisy.

Last edited on: December 6, 2008 12:12 AM

4 comments:

Tony Astro said...

Subject: Re:Week 9b: Driving Miss Daisy (Film Analysis) Topic: u09d2 Film Analysis
Author: Lena Matheos Date: December 7, 2008 3:04 PM


Great post! I have seen the movie, Miss Daisy and appreciated all of your analysis. You stated, "A counselor is responsible to explore not only her age but her culture including her religion." I could not agree with you more. Sometimes as counselors we forget to incorporate the religious unbringing of a client at any age for that matter into our treatment plan.

Understanding the impact of religion on health has become an important question lately that is guiding research on health and health care practice (Schlundt, Franklin, Hargreaves, Larson, McClellan, Niebler & Patel, 2008). Recent studies show that individuals who have some sort of religious belief system allows them to give a new meaning to life (Schlundt, Franklin, Hargreaves, Larson, McClellan, Niebler & Patel, 2008). Spirituality and religious beliefs affect perceptions of pain, symptoms, and beliefs about the causes of illness and its course (Schlundt, Franklin, Hargreaves, Larson, McClellan, Niebler & Patel, 2008). Spirituality seem to provide a source of meaning and purpose, a framework within which people interpret their lives and experiences (Schlundt, Franklin, Hargreaves, Larson, McClellan, Niebler & Patel, 2008). Multidisciplinary research is using more stringent measurement, methodological, and data analytic techniques and indicates that the relationships between religion/spirituality and health outcomes are very positive (Schlundt, Franklin, Hargreaves, Larson, McClellan, Niebler & Patel, 2008). These findings show positive associations among religious belief, healthy behaviors, and better health outcomes consistently across a number of populations (Schlundt, Franklin, Hargreaves, Larson, McClellan, Niebler & Patel, 2008). Using both prospective and cross-sectional designs, measures of religious involvement have been associated with better physical and mental health and decreased mortality in older populations (Schlundt, Franklin, Hargreaves, Larson, McClellan, Niebler & Patel, 2008). Also people who attend a religious institution regularly have shown positive associations with decreased depression, improved physical health and lower blood pressure, boosted immune functioning, enhanced physical functioning, and improved subjective health (Schlundt, Franklin, Hargreaves, Larson, McClellan, Niebler & Patel, 2008).

Reference:

Schlundt, D. G., Franklin, M. D., Hargreaves, M., Larson, C., McClellan, L., Niebler, S., Patel, K. (2008). Religious Affiliation, Health Behaviors and Outcomes: Nashville REACH 2010. American Journal of Health Behavior, 32(6), 714-24. Retrieved December 7, 2008, from ProQuest Medical Library database. (Document ID: 1592737551).

Lena Matheos

Tony Astro said...

Subject: Re:Week 9b: Driving Miss Daisy (Film Analysis) Topic: u09d2 Film Analysis
Author: Tony Astro Date: December 9, 2008 12:48 AM


Thanks for the good observation Lena.

Another issue i want to bring out was stereotypes by the society: childlike attitude and economic burden on our aged.

When me and my wife was watching Driving Miss Daisy, she commented that aged are typical go back in cycle towards childhood (note the ending of the moving Mr. Hoke was feeding Miss Daisy – like a child) which I thought was a good observation. But is it stereotyped?

One needs to examine the issue of old age as a distinctly human problem, fraught with all kinds of sufferings and hardship. We need to especially sensitive to the needs of the aged themselves, and the quality and meaning of their lives as they face their remaining years. How old age is thought of is important. When we change our conceptions of old age, perhaps some new proverbs and maxims may also appear in our verbal culture, and dramatically improve the cultural stereotype of old age. This in turn may guide us to more effective policies as we address the issues of old age (Bengston, et al, 2000)

This generation has many stereotypes for the aged brought about by the economic centeredness of the society. Today’s generation of seeing the aged as economic burden is another stereotyped not depicted in the movie because Miss Daisy is wealthy and they have no complicated HMOs back then.

Along with what appears to be a general tendency of today’s young generations to look on the aged (parents and others alike) as an economic burden and social nuisance, it is likely the economy-centered, materialistic, capitalist “culture of development” that has dominated the consciousness of the entire world in the past three decades or so has radically altered how social and family issues are perceived, such that most everything is seen as an economic problem and in instrumental or practical terms (Kim, 1994)


References:

Bengtson,V., Kyong-Dong Kim, Myers, G. (2000). Aging in East and West: Families, States, and the Elderly Published by Springer Publishing Company, 2000

Kim, K. D. (1994). The culture of development and the idea of “cultured” development. In Manwoo Lee et al. (Ed.), Culture and development in a new era and in a transforming world (pp. 3-17). Paris: The Institute for Far Eastern Studies, Kyungnam University and UNESCO.

Tony Astro said...

Subject: Re:Linda's response to Tony's post Topic: u09d2 Film Analysis
Author: Linda Bradley Date: December 7, 2008 7:21 PM


Hi Tony,

Seen it a couple of times, loved it!! One thing that Mr. Hoke displayed was lots of patience with Miss Daisy. He never let her insulting behavior detour his generosity and kindness. Miss Daisy was reluctant at first, but she eventually began trusting Mr. Hoke and the pair became good friends.

Counselors should certainly be knowledgeable of basic psycological needs, other issues and challenges this population commonly face. Counseling elders can be a learning process, but can be a very enjoyable one. Patience is a virtue when working with this group. Counselors should also avoid of stereotyping elders, and also be knowledgeable of ethical codes involving elderly care. You provided very informative and constructive etails regarding the role of counseling as well as the strengths and struggles. Thanks for a great post!!!

Linda Bradley

Tony Astro said...

Subject: Re:Week 9b: Driving Miss Daisy (Film Analysis) Topic: u09d2 Film Analysis
Author: Ellenor Rollins Date: December 7, 2008 11:53 PM


Ms Daisy and Hoke did have an interesting relationship. As adults age they do seem to accept people for what they are. What is interesting is Hoke role in the movie. He was like a counselor to Ms. Daisy. As you stated As counselor we should be aware of our patient’s culture, race and religion and be sensitive to their needs.
Religion and spirituality must be tackled in counseling when clients begin to address his spirituality and belief and have an effect on member’s health and influence how both clients and counselor response to the issue of concern, psychologically and physically. It is important to understand all aspect of people and also be aware of the differences in order to best counsel others.

Ellenor Rollins

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