The townspeople are unaware that they have led the same standardized lifestyles.They conform to the mayor’s idea of how people should act “pleasant.” The camera pans to the book just as the blank page begins to fill with text.The teenagers are able to use this different perspective to unflatten their conventional thinking (Sousanis).
It’s not important.” He does this out of his own fear of corrupting their “pleasant” society. Roads and rivers and…” David is cut off by a peer’s question, “like the mighty Mississippi?
After being pressed further, David explains that “there are some places where the road doesn’t go in a circle. ” The boy’s interruption with a connection he formed between the unending river David spoke of and the book he was reading displays critical thinking skills.
The mayor was unhappy with the entire town being exposed to the mural because it portrayed forbidden practices that destroyed “pleasant” societal concepts.
David goes against the town standard of accepting the mayor’s directions without protest.
The night after the fire David walks into the soda shop to a crowd of his peers waiting to ask him how he knew the way to stop the fire.
David says, “well, where I used to live that’s just what firemen did.” When David reveals that he’s from outside of Pleasantville he creates another “cultural mode of seeing” (Cohen 81).
Pleasantville’s division into colored and non-colored people mirrors the segregation that was prevalent throughout the United States in the 1920’s.
The mural’s depiction of burning books, teenage sex and the town hall sinking into the ground was accessible to everyone in town.
Cohen’s idea is reflected in by the traditionalists’ fears of David’s ability to change their old-fashioned values.
Even though the traditional townspeople hold this fear of change, they secretly envy the colored part of society for their vivid experiences of emotion and knowledge.