Popular Culture and Violent Behavior Essay

Popular Culture and Violent Behavior Essay

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Popular Culture and Violent Behavior


In 1871 E.B. Taylor defined culture as 'that complex whole which
includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, customs, and many other
capabilities and habits acquired by...[members] of society.'[1]

Taylor was talking about 'high' culture, an aristocratic view of the
past-times such as ballet, theatre and art. Popular culture, on the
other hand, is a form of 'low' culture and is based primarily on
marketing, mass production and revenue. Low culture is what is sold to
the masses, ergo, low culture equals mass culture. All these terms
refer to popular culture, defined in the Oxford Dictionary of
Sociology as:

'…accessible to everyone. Popular culture is far more widespread than
'high' culture and in the United Statesand in Europe, for example, it
is dominated by television, films and recorded popular music.' [2]

I have chosen to study popular culture and its influence on violent
behaviour, because, as is stated in its definition, popular culture
is, 'accessible to everyone.' These hugely accessible forms of media
influence all of us, everyday, wherever we go. My keen interest in all
of these forms of media immediately drew me to the subject;
television, film and music are major influences not only in my life
but in the lives of teenagers across Western Europe, Australasia,
Developed Asia and the United States of America. Despite this easy
accessibility of popular culture - film, television, music and radio -
to young people, popular culture and adolescence are not mutually
exclusive with the effects and the range of mass media affecting one
in three adults in America....

... middle of paper ...


[19] Intimate Matters: A History of Sexuality in AmericaJohn D'Emillo
and Estelle Freedman

[20] Tom Dewe Matthews The Guardian April 4th 1998 in article titled:
Ban it? But we never ban any films in Britain

[21] http://www.bbfc.co.uk

[22] Genesis 4:8 - 'Later Cain suggested to his brother, Abel, ''Let's
go out into the fields.'' And while they were there, Cain attacked and
killed his brother.' Taken from New Living Translation © Tyndale 1997

[23] http://www.wave.org

[24] Wartella Literature Review

[25] Sociology by Anthony Giddens © 1997 Polity Press Ltd.

[26] Buckingham, ed. Barker and Petley, 1997

[27] Sociology by Anthony Giddens © 1997 Polity Press Ltd.


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