La Haine (Hate) is a French drama movie written and directed by Mathieu Kassovitz. The main characters of the movie are Vincent, Said and Hubert. The movie is about them and their struggle to continue their lives in the suburbs of Paris.
The events in the movie take place in about twenty hours of the lives of the three men. They share some features, for instance everyone of them belongs to their own minority groups (Jewish community, Arap community and Afro-French/Black community), all of them live in the suburbs of Paris, all of them have impoverished families and backgrounds.
To criticize the Chicago School, it is needed to briefly explain the approaches of that school. The first approach of the Chicago School is the “Ecological Apprach” in which Robert Park and Ernest Burgess are the main people. In this approach urban areas are studied on the model of biological echology, which claims that ecosystems are formed in an evolutionary process which leads to a systematic distribution of organisms in an area in which there occurs a certain balance and equilibrium between species. In this model, there are competition, invasion and succession. There is a competition among species, and the fittest survives. This maintains the equilibrium. As newcomers get attracted the ecosystem, they invade it. This invasion results in succession. The second approach of the Chicago School is “Urbanism As A Way of Life” in which Louis Wirth has the most significant role. In this approach it is claimed that numerous people live in close neighbourhoods with knowing each other personally, and most of the relations are fleeting and partial. The bonds between the urban people are weak since they tend to be quite mobile and flow of life is getting much faster. There is competition rather than cooperation between them. In short, individualistic lifestyle prevails among urban people.
In my humble opinion, cities can be regarded as ecosystems as Robert Park says in the echological approach, but there should not be a thing as invasion and succession. Relatively poor newcomers come and settle in cities such as Vincent, Said and Hubert, but upper and upper middle classes also live in cities and not leave. Remember the scene when they are in an art gallery and have some unlucky contacts. Although the poor and the upper and upper middle classes live in different ways and have divergent world views, they still have the capacity to live together and that is an ecosystem. Newcomers, the ones who are relatively poor, do not push the others to desert the city and constitute a reason for the upper and upper middle classes to do so. Therefore, we cannot say that one group takes place of another group. There are rather poor ares, ghettos, banlieues of cities in which “those who fails to suit” live and places where more prosperous pople live. They simply form a new and much more diverse society by accepting each other as in the example of Paris in the movie.
In the case of urbanism as a way of life, I do not agree with Wirth since his claims are based on the West, so those claims cannot be beneficial to explain the urban lives of the other parts of the world as they are not valid everywhere. Besides that, new bonds are established between people in cities that are not weak just like the one between Vincent, Said and Hubert. People form their own communities, establish their own abiding and close relations that are not pragmatic. Remember the scene when a group, including those three, have a barbeque party on the roof of a building. They have strong bonds and those bonds are not pragmatic. With those relations, people start to cooperate rather than compete. They form their own subcultures, which generates a sense of belonging to a group or a community, and this prevents people from following an individualistic lifesytle. In the movie, there has always been cooperations and not copetition among them. They have not acted in an individualistic way, and they have not competed with each other.