Violence and the Media

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Violence and the Media Television programming today can be a powerful influence in developing value systems and shaping behavior (Bee, 1998: 261-262). Unfortunately, much of today's television programming is violent. For instance, the level of violence during Saturday morning cartoons is higher than the level of violence during prime time. There are about six to eight violent acts per hour during prime time, versus twenty to thirty violent acts per hour on Saturday morning cartoons ("Killing Screens," 1994). Also, well before children finish their grade school, they will witness up to 8,000 murders and 100,000 violent acts on television (Levine, 1995: 143). Moreover, children spend more time learning about life through media than in any other manner. The average child spends approximately twenty-seven hours per week watching television, which means that children spend most of their time only watching television and sleeping (Minow & LaMay, 1995: 32-33). Also, it has been proven by many studies that there is a positive relationship between television violence and behavioral problems in children. For example, research by Wood, Wong, and Chachere (1991:378) have shown that "exposure to media violence increase viewers' aggression." This paper will discuss that repeated exposure of young children and adolescents can negatively effect children's behavior. This negative behavior can be acted out by imitation of violent acts observed on television, by accepting violence as a way to solve problems, and by desensitization to the amount of violence seen on television. Also, it will discuss how parents and teachers can prevent excessive viewing of television violence in children and adolescents. Children between the ages of one to fo... ... middle of paper ... ...kground Paper. Ottawa: National Clearinghouse on Family Violence, 1993. Levine, Suzanne, B. "A Variety of Measures Could Combat Media Violence." Violence in the Media. Ed. Carol Wekesser. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, Inc., 1995. 142-147. Minow, Newton, N. and Craig L. LaMay. Abandoned in the Wasteland. New York: Hill and Wang, 1995. Rosengren, Karl, E., Ulla Johnsson-Smaragdi, and Inga Sonesson. "For Better and for Worse: Effects Studies and Beyond." Media Effects and Beyond. Ed. Karl E. Rosengren. New York: Routledge, 1994. 133-149. Westen, Drew. Psychology: Mind, Brain, & Culture. Toronto: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1996. Wood, Wendy, Frank Y. Wong, and J. Gregory Chachere. "Effects of Media Violence on Viewers' Aggression in Unconstrained Social Interaction." Psychological Bulletin 109.3 (1991): 371-383.

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