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Posted on March 9th, 2013, by

Abstract
The problem of the growing violence among the youth, especially children and adolescents aggravates for the number of cases of violence among the youth increases. The current study focuses on the revelation of the major causes of the growing violence among children and adolescents. The study suggests the close connection between the violence in media and its negative impact on children’s behavior. To test this hypothesis, ten children, ten parents and ten educators were selected, interviewed and involved in questionnaires. The study reveals the relationship between the violence and children’s behavior, for children become more aggressive and violent under the impact of violence in media. Therefore, the study reveals the scope of the impact of violence in media on children and attempts to prove that this impact is negative that means that violence in media should be regulated and under the control to prevent its negative impact on children.

Introduction
Today, the problem of violence among the youth is growing more and more serious because violence among children and adolescents becomes more and more frequent. Moreover, the dangerous trend is the decrease of the age, when extremely aggressive and severe violence is used by children. In such a situation, many researchers (Barker, 2008) attempt to explore causes of violence among the youth and they point out that media violence may be one of the major factors that may cause the violence in children. In fact, media violence may have a negative impact on people, especially children but the full scope of its impact needs detailed studies because through understanding the cause of the violence in children, it is possible to elaborate effective measures of its prevention. In actuality, children are vulnerable to the impact of violence in media, through video games, violent movies, TV shows, internet, and other media that makes the research of the problem particularly important because the negative impact of media violence on children will need the introduction of regulating measures to prevent the negative impact of media violence on children’s behavior and to prevent violence among children.

Methods
The study of the impact of media violence on children involved the use of qualitative methods of analysis and focused on the use of interviews and questionnaires. However, before using these methods, the subjects were selected for the study. The subjects involved in the study were divided into four groups. The first group was comprised of children at the age of 10 to 15, who were exposed to the impact of media violence, through playing video games and watching violent movies. The consent of parents was obtained before the children were involved in the study. The second group was comprised of parents of children, who had different social, educational, and professional backgrounds. The third group consisted of teachers, who worked with children and who could observe their behavior on the regular basis. Finally, there was the control group consisting of children at the age of 10 to 15, who were not exposed to media violence in the course of the study. The subjects were selected randomly and they represented different social groups, genders, age, and occupations. All the subjects were interviewed and involved in questionnaires. The main point was to find out the impact of media violence on children’s behavior and psychology. Children, their parents and teachers responded to the question, whereas the researcher collected the information for the further analysis. Questions posed concerned with behavioral patterns observed by parents and educators in children from both groups to trace any changes and differences in terms of violent and aggressive behavior of children from both groups. Children, in their turn, responded to questions concerning their perception of media violence and how they believed media violence influenced or changed their behavior and self-perception.

Results
The results of the study have revealed the fact that media violence has a negative impact on the behavior of children. To put it more precisely, media violence leads to the growing aggression and violence among children. In this respect, it is important to place emphasis on the fact that children exposed to the impact of media violence became more aggressive and several cases of violence have occurred with the involvement of these children. In contrast, children, which were not exposed to the impact of media violence, maintained their normal behavior and did not manifest violent or aggressive behavior patterns. At this point, it is worth mentioning the fact that children from both groups had substantial difficulties with definition of the impact of media violence on their behavior. They believed that what they saw in media was right and many children just followed the lead of their favorite characters of movies, video games, and other media.
In this regard, parents and educators noticed negative changes in the behavior of children exposed to the impact of media violence. They pointed out that children exposed to the impact of media violence were characterized by the high level of anxiety, increased level of aggression compared to their normal behavior, which they observed before the experiment. Educators argued that the children exposed to the impact of media violence deteriorated their academic performance and attempted to solve conflicts with their peers through violence and aggressive actions or words. As for the control group, educators and parents failed to notice any substantial changes in their behavior. Therefore, parents and educators agreed that media violence leads to the growing anxiety in children, high aggression and inclination to violent behavior patterns of children exposed to media violence. Therefore, the study has proved that media violence has a particularly negative impact on children at the age of 10 to 15, which were involved in the current study.

Discussion
In such a way, the study has revealed the fact that media violence is particularly dangerous in relation to children. Media violence has a negative impact on children because they cannot distinguish good from bad and they take messages from media for granted. They consider violence being good, if they see violence in media on the regular basis. Unlike adults, who just grow accustomed to violence, children believe that media violence is a norm and violent behavior is a positive behavior pattern. Therefore, they tend to the violent behavior following the lead of their favorite characters. Children are just in the course of their psychological formation and their personality is not shaped. They still keep learning and acquiring moral and ethical norms as well as behavior patterns from the outside world. In such a way, children become exposed to the negative impact of media violence and their behavior grows more aggressive and violent. They take violence for grated and believe that violence is good. As a result, they attempt to solve conflicts and problems with the help of violence. In this regard, they often follow the lead of their favorite characters and they attempt to be violent and aggressive because they believe that this model of behavior is good. In such a situation, the current policies are insufficient to protect children from the negative impact of media violence on their behavior and cognitive development and consistent changes are needed to minimize the exposure of children to media violence.

Conclusion
Thus, taking into account all above mentioned, it is important to place emphasis on the fact that media violence does have a negative impact on the behavior and development of children. In this respect, the findings of the current study proves the fact that changes in the current policies are essential because the authorities should force media to decrease violence and to minimize the impact of media violence on children. At this point, educators should cooperate closely with parents to unite their efforts to limit the access of children to violent media because many parents are unaware of risks associated with the impact of media violence on their children. However, efforts of parents and educators alone are not enough because they should be supported by the reduction of media violence and responsible policies being conducted by media companies. In such a way, educators, parents and the society at large can minimize the negative impact of media violence on children.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Works Cited
Althusser, L. “Ideology & ideological state apparatuses.”¯ In J. Evans & S. Hall (eds) Visual Culture: The Reader. London, Sage Publications, 1999, pp. 317-323.
Bagdikian, Ben H. The Media Monopoly, Sixth Edition, Beacon Press, 2000.
Barker, C. Cultural Studies: Theory and Practice. 3rd edn., London, Sage, 2008, pp.57-73.
Chomsky, Naom. “What Makes Mainstream Media Mainstream”¯, Z Magazine, June, 1997.
Klein, Sage N. Advertising and Popular Culture, London: Routeledge, 2000.
Tolson, A. “Popular culture: practice and institution.”¯ In C. MacCabe (ed), High theory/Low culture: Analysing popular television & film. Manchester, Manchester University Press, 1996, pp.146-155.

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