Communications technology is expanding through the entire global community (Dyson 2). Children everywhere are being born into a world of images and messages, which are largely separated from their home, school and spiritual lives (Dyson 2). In society today storytellers are seldom parents, grandparents, teachers or the clergy; instead they are the handful of distant forces with something to sell (Dyson 2). What is unique about the media industry is that in global and corporate domination they have become part of our culture as well as our identity (Dyson 3). Social scientists and child advocates have been exploring the effects of media for decades, yet it is only recently that the concern has generated a public debate (Bok 3). Historical Disagreements concerning the effect of violence revealed in works of art and entertainment have resonated over the centuries (Bok 41). We must ask ourselves whether or not our versions of entertainment exhibits anymore violence then past forms of recreation, for example gladiatorial games or public hangings (Bok 23). Plato viewed human life as a pilgrimage from the appearance to reality (Bok 41). He also believed that a piece of art had to be strictly censored when they depicted any form of evil and cruelty (Bok 41). When an artist imitated what was bad, they add to the sum of badness in the world (Bok 41). Both Plato and Aristotle pointed out, we as humans do find delight in representations of objects and emotions that would consider different from real life; most of us agree with Aristotle in refusing to believe that they are corrupt (Bok 41). The Romans remain the prototype for violent entertainment at its most extreme (Bok 17). It was a culture, which sanctioned tradition, foreign conquest was a domestic culture, and weapons were easily available (Bok 17). The treatment of newborns and slaves within the home extended to crucifixions and other brutal punishments (Bok 17). Though on a whole the Romans did not criticize their choice of entertainment, one philosopher, Seneca, did. To exhibit the slaughter of eighteen elephants in the Circus, pitting criminals against them in a mimic battle [and] thought it a notable kind of spectacle to kill human beings after a new fashion. Do they fight to the death? That is not enough! Are they torn to pieces? That is not Eno...
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...103). In regard to the effects of media violence on children and young adults, such works challenge our instinctive denial of our most primative layers of fear and aggression (Bok 28).
Works Cited and Consulted
Bok, Sissela. Mayhem. Massachusetts: Perseus Books. 1998.
Dyson, Rose A. Mind Abuse:Media Violence in an Information Age. Montreal: Black Rose Books. 2000.
Herr, Kathryn G., ed. Rating Electronic Games:Violence is in the Eye of the Beholder. Ohio: Sage Publications Inc. 1993.
Ledingham, Jane E. The Effects of Television on Children. Ottawa: National Clearinghouse on Family Violence and Prevention Division. 1993.
Leone, Bruce. Violence in the Media. San Diego: Greenhouse Press. 1995. Morse, Jodie. "Ne year Later: Can We prevent another Columbine?." [www.newsweek.com] 24 April 2000.
Rosenblatt, Roger. "Works of the Trench Coat". [www.newsweek.com] 2000.
Russell, Nick. Morals and the Media: Ethics in Canadian Journalism. Vancouver: UBC Press. 1995.
Singer, Benjamin D. ed. Communications in Canadian Society. Toronto: International Thomson Pub. 1995.
Smith, Nigel. Violence in Society. Turin: Wayland Publishers Limited.1995.
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