This essay is based on the effects of television violence on children. More specifically, it deals with the relationship found between television violence and aggression found in young children. I chose this topic because I found it interesting to learn that many studies have found a connection between television viewing and the behavior of people, especially children. The first study found is called “Television Violence and Children’s Aggression,” by Wendy Josephson. Josephson begins her study by commenting on other studies, which pertain to the idea of television violence leading to aggressiveness in children’s behavior.
She notes that, in fact, there are still differing views over whether or not behavior is affected by the violence. Josephson aims to change these two areas and how they are affected by television violence. The overall purpose of her study is to research the effect this violence has on boys’ aggression. Special emphasis is placed on factors such as teacher-rated characteristic aggressiveness in the boys, timing of frustration (before or after watching the televised violence), and violence related cues. The second study reviewed is by Leonard Eron.
Titled “Interventions to Mitigate the Psychological Effects of Media Violence on Aggressive Behavior,” it begins with Eron s realization that although many studies were conducted which support the link between violence on television and aggressive behavior, very few studies have been conducted which attempt to negotiate between the two. Interventions between television violence and aggression could be useful because, then studies could be made on reducing the effects of violence on the viewer. Also, the results of such a study could be helpful in researching the cause and effect relationship, which may exist between the two.
However, they are unable to control where the child is getting its aggression form, whether it is the TV or some other area. If the aggressive behavior is reduced, it could support the theory of a causal effect as convincingly as a study performed in a carefully controlled laboratory experiment. The literature review is clear and easy to understand. Eron states at the beginning what his study is about. However, it is not clear in the review, at first, that his study deals with young children. This should have been more apparent since different results are expected depending on whom the study involves.
It is apparent, however, that his intentions are to study the results, which would come from a study involving intervening variables between television violence and aggressive behavior. “Effects of Realistic TV Violence vs. Fictional Violence on Aggression” by Charles Atkin is the third study I reviewed. Atkin’s study starts off by stating that much evidence supports that the amount of aggression shown by a child can be related to the amount of violent TV they watch. He focuses his literature review on the condition of reality vs. fantasy in violence.
More realistic forms of violence are said to lead to greater aggression. His study deals with the comparison of aggressive responses in pre-adolescents to real news violence and fictional entertainment violence. The viewer notices reality, in the case of these studies. The viewer decides whether or not the violence appears real if you think it is physically possible, if it doesn t look possible you would call it fictional violence. If a violent situation appears real, the viewer is more likely to be interested in it. Therefore, it is said to lead to more aggression than violence in unrealistic situations.
Atkins seeks, in his study, causal evidence of impact which takes into account reality violence, fantasy violence, and no violence treatments. The fourth and final study to be reviewed is titled “Intervening Variables in the TV Violence-Aggression Relation” by L. R. Huesmann, K. Lagerspertz, and L. Eron. These researchers attempt to determine the boundary conditions the theory that television violence leading to aggression. They also set out to study the impact on children with different, age, culture, and sex, have on the TV violence-aggression relation.
Finally, they try to further examine how the viewing of television violence relates to aggression. Most of their study focuses on children imitating what they observe. However, they acknowledge the fact that these observations may be altered due to the society in which they live, their age, or their sex. Therefore, Huesmann, Lagerspertz, and Eron stress the need of conducting similar methods of study in various kinds of cultures to gain the necessary information for obtaining a general view of the effects of television violence on children.
In conclusion, the studies all basically aim to learn more about the connection between television violence and aggression among young children. However, the majority of the studies deal mainly with the effect of the violence on males. Therefore, females seem to be hardly ever thought of as a different category in this area. Only one of the studies even mentioned the use of females to achieve different results. Most of the studies were easy to comprehend, and the researchers were fairly straightforward in what they expected to accomplish with their studies.