Media Violence or Myth?

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Media violence is a topic that has warranted much discussion from active citizens, critics, and scientific researchers on both sides of the argument. In order to better understand the media violence debate a clear definition of violence, or aggression, must be established. However, one of the reasons that the heated discussion over media violence even exists is because of the difficulty in accomplishing this task. “Aggression is a highly complex phenomenon, whose etiology includes a wide variety of psychological, social, and circumstantial factors. 'Measuring' aggression in relationship to such an equally complex substance as the media is incredibly difficult” (Trend 45). Various sources offer different interpretations of aggressive…show more content…
Even the data on children viewing violent images in television—the most researched media—is apparent. Grimes, Anderson, and Bergen quote page seven of the report to the Surgeon General (Television, 1972):
The accumulated evidence, however, does not warrant the conclusion that televised violence has a uniformly adverse effect nor the conclusion that it has an adverse effect on the majority of children. It cannot even be said that the majority of the children in the various studies we have reviewed showed an increase in aggressive behavior in response to the violent fare to which they were exposed. The evidence does indicate the televised violence may lead to increased aggressive behavior in certain subgroups of children who might constitute a small portion or substantial proportion of the total population of young television viewers. (109-110)
Contrary to the notion that children are the most vulnerable group among media viewers, youth (and even people of all ages) are not negatively effected, and ironically can learn important lessons about conflict in the world. Critics, researchers, or citizens making the argument that media violence is the cause of violent and
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