The Media 's Portrayal Of Psychological Disorders Essay

The Media 's Portrayal Of Psychological Disorders Essay

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In today’s media, the portrayals of psychological disorders are displayed in a variety of ways. However, sometimes these representations are accurate and effective but sometimes the portrayals deviate from what the actual disorder should elicit and presents an inaccurate impression of the disorder that is not representative of science. In addition, these inaccurate impressions can also lead to the stigmatization of the disorder. Of the many disorders that exist, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is commonly depicted in media and films, such as, American Sniper and The Dark Knight. It is relevant to compare and contrast how accurate or inaccurately the media portrays PTSD compared to actual science. This comparison can be achieved by examining etiology, clinical presentation, stereotypes and treatment.
When we analyze the media’s representation of psychological disorders with science, something that can be examined is how the etiology or cause of the disorder is presented. In this particular case, PTSD is the disorder that will be magnified. According to Barlow, Durand, Stewart & Lalumiere (2015), PTSD is the one disorder for which we are sure of the etiology. PTSD is a common and chronic anxiety disorder that can result after exposure to a traumatic life event such as military combat and physical or sexual assault (Bailey, Cordell, Sobin & Neumeister, 2013). In the film, The Dark Knight, the main protagonist is Bruce Wayne, otherwise known for his alter ego, the Batman. In this particular film, the cause or etiology of PTSD is not displayed effectively. Although Bruce experiences countless traumatic events when fighting villains and criminals, the film does not depict the origin of his PTSD. In the world of superh...


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...als who suffer from PTSD.
In conclusion, the examination of different aspects of PTSD clearly shows a difference in the way that media portrays PTSD compared to actual science. The media portrayed PTSD ineffectively in some aspects such as: treatment, clinical presentation and etiology compared to science. The differences between science and media are negative and can definitely create the wrong impression on the disorder. In addition to wrong impressions, the stigmatization of PTSD can definitely be affected by the way that the media portrays the disorder. Even though both portrayals are different, it was relevant to achieve the comparison of portrayals through the examination of etiology, clinical presentation, stereotypes and treatment. This comparison confirms that media negatively portrayed aspects of PTSD, which would lead to stigmatization.














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