Media Violence Related to
AGGRESSIVE AND VIOLENT BEHAVIOR?
Essentials of Psychology
May 28, 2013
Research project number 05020500
I have chosen to discuss the role that media violence plays in aggression in children, specifically as related to Albert Bandura’s experiments. I specifically chose this topic based on Bandura's observations with his famous Bobo doll study (which has been very influential to linking media exposure to violent aggressive behavior in children). In researching this paper, I hope to find an answer to satisfy my curiosity as to whether the media is to blame to the extent that Bandura would have us believe or are there other forces accountable. Is it logical to blame media for the …show more content…
The study used two test groups of boys who were exposed to either a violent or non-violent television over a six-week period. The boys who were only shown the non-violent broadcast displayed more aggressive behavior than the boys that were shown the violent shows (Feshback & Singer, 1971: p247). Moreover, Feshbach's hypothesis is supported by what is called the Catharsis effect (Gerbner, G., Gross, L., Melody, W.H., 1982: p.40), which theorizes that the boys were able to vent their aggressive thoughts and feelings though relation and not act those aggressions out physically. So does the Catharsis effect theory that by viewing violence on television, aggressive thoughts can be released hold weight?
If media can be held responsible for aggression and violence than shouldn't it also be praised for bravery and good-deeds in our civilization (Cooke, 1993, p.L19)? There have been countless programs that have demonstrated heroism and kindnesses as there have been those which have demonstrated the ugly side of human nature. Patrick Cooke believed that people went along with the theory that television violence causes aggression because we need to be able to justify the violence and aggression in others. Cooke also believed that television could be used as an instrument of teaching both in education and forming good role models. He also believed that if violence in TV causes more aggression than it should also be attributed to the good qualities of people.