Media Violence: Effects on society
“Millions of teens have seen the 1996 movie Scream…Scream opens with a scene in which a teenage girl is forced to watch her jock boyfriend tortured and then disemboweled by two fellow students who, it will eventually be learned, want revenge on anyone from high school who crossed them. After jock boy's stomach is shown cut open and he dies screaming, the killers stab and torture the girl, then cut her throat and hang her body from a tree so that Mom can discover it when she drives up. A dozen students and teachers are graphically butchered in the film, while the characters make running jokes about murder. At one point, a boy tells a big-breasted friend she'd better be careful because the stacked girls always get it in horror films; in the next scene, she's grabbed, stabbed through the breasts, and murdered… The movie builds to a finale in which one of the killers announces that he and his accomplice started off by murdering strangers but then realized it was a lot more fun to kill their friends.” (Easterbrook) This is what teens, adults and society in general find interesting. The Los Angeles Times described it as bravura, provocative send-up." This is not the TV of the baby boomers any more, I Love Lucy, And Gilligan’s Island lack something that seems to entertain people today’s society. What is the difference between Scream and I Love Lucy? The answer is simple, violent content. All media, TV, movies, video games, even some books and radio programs have been getting bloodier and bloodier. Video games are very new and not a lot of information is yet available. Print and radio are difficult to compare to the giant TV and Movie studios. Therefore, effects of media violence are best studied using only TV and movies as the main influence on behavior. TV and movies are getting more and more gruesome. What is the problem? It’s just a show. That is the real question can “just a show” influence someone’s behavior. Movies and TV have been blamed for everything from copy cat murders, to the collapse of our entire society’s morals. Violence in movies and TV will keep increasing, and people will keep buying it. American’s need to determine if violence in movies and TV causes violence in society. Background Information
The difference between movies and TV from 10 years ago and movies and TV from today is astonishing. If those 10 years are broadened to 80 years the difference is outrageously shocking. The bottom line is that cinema and television are progressively adding more violence to programming. This is why it’s important to understand the history of media when looking at violent media in today’s society. In 1893 the Edison Corporation established the first motion picture studio in New York City. Movie watchers could watch short films for 25 cents. Later a man from the Edison Corporation, Edwin S Porter created the first movie, The great Train Robbery. Movies got their start with violence; although it was nothing compared to what is in theaters today. After the great train robbery movies took off. Everyone in America was struck by the latest craze. In the early days of movies there was little or no violence. Characters portrayed happy American families. People in movies never swore at each other or hurt each other. Everyone went to the movies to feel good and enjoy a clean show. Charlie Chaplin delighted audiences with his silent films. He wore baggy pants, over sized shoes and a derby hat. He danced across stage to the tune of laughter and applause. When movies were still young people were entertained by comedy and romance. Violence in the media barley even existed. After silent films westerns started to become popular. Violence was very prevalent in these films. Americans loved watching the cowboys shoot each other in the middle of town. The violence in these films seemed innocent, the sheriff always took care of anyone that caused trouble and the “good guys” always won. After westerns...
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