"Television And Aggression" Essay

1173 words - 5 pages

We live in a society where parents are often busy working, attempting to maintain theirlifestyle. Children have begun to have more unsupervised time to watch television. Parents, like myself, along with educators and experts are force to raise the discussion as to whether Television violence attributes to aggressive behavior in children? Within this comparative review I will attempt to identify the principal viewers, and differing views that enforce or Protest that Television viewing attributes to negative behavior in children, along with prevention methods parents can implement to insure we are making educating decisions for our children's future.Principal Viewers:The principal viewers defined are preadolescent and adolescent boys. (TV and Aggression preface xii). Preschool children begin watching an average of 27hrs of TV per week. (Nielsen 1990). Parental limitations are usually not defined on what a child may select to watch. Twenty four percent of the average household keeps a TV within a child's bedroom. (Hart 1992) The average violent show displays 12 acts of violence per hour but that number is increased within child programming to 16 per hour deriving significantly from child cartoons. (Healy 1990). Speaking as a parent myself there is a growing concern among the public that content serves as a model for impressionable youth, which can foster aggressive thoughts and actions. Some psychologist suggests that continual viewing of violence on TV will affect a child's ability to socialize within society.Behavior Modifications:Seymour Feshbach and Robert Singer performed one laboratory study viewed. The study focused on boys between the ages of nine and fifteen years of age. The study compared boys from various backgrounds, for example Private Prep schools boys from well off families who were predominantly white to government run child placement facility placing predominantly Black and Spanish children due to inadequate parental home care provided. The boys were placed in groups by institution (school). The group was called Control Aggressions TV (pg. 52). The boys were required to watch a minimum of six hours of television a week for six weeks. In some environments the viewing period was increased because the children had unlimited viewing availability. The boys were required to watch shows identified on the viewing list provided. After each program the boys rated how much they liked the show viewed. Television shows were categorized as aggressive and non-aggressive programming. (Pg.55). The study tracted the boys aggressive attitudes as well as the number of aggressive acts in which the boys engaged after program viewing. The results are inconsistent with the theory that aggressive behavior derives from violent television viewing. The results conclude, "Exposure to aggressive content in television over a six-week period does not produce an increment in aggressive behavior."(Pg. 140) The only area where children displayed aggression was in...

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