Video nasties: the effects of sexualised and violent imagery on children and young people

Massey, K., Alys, L., Pina, A., Scally, M. and Adler, J. (2013) Video nasties: the effects of sexualised and violent imagery on children and young people. In: XVIII. Workshop on Aggression, 7-9 November 2013, Bielefeld University, Bielefeld, Germany.

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The Office for the Commissioner for Children sanctioned a literature review into the effects of pornography, a part of which focused on the impact of violent/sexualised imagery on children and young people. The report was motivated by police interviews with young perpetrators of sexual violence who identified their experience of rape as ‘like being in a porn movie’.

A literature search was carried out, drawing upon 85 grey and white sources to assess the impact of televised violence on children and young people, and how it affects their attitudes and behaviours. Although direct causality cannot be established the literature shows links between viewing violent imagery and young people’s attitudes and behaviours. Extensive literature was found to suggest that youth culture is affected by sexual and aggressive imagery (Anderson, Shibuya, Ihori, et al, 2010; Löfgren-Martenson & Mansson, 2010; Peter & Valkenburg, 2007), and that this influences children and young people (Anderson & Bushman, 2001). Interactive imagery such as video games is particularly damaging - it is postulated this results from the reward system attached to the game’s interface. The impact is contingent on both the form of the media viewed (Lo & Wei, 2005; Sterner & Berkley, 2012), the young person’s support network (L’Engle, Brown and Kenneavy, 2004), social learning (Hunter & Figueredo & Malamuth, 2009) and other demographic factors, not least gender which has been consistently found to be significant in the effect of sexualised media (Anderson & Bushman, 2001; Klof, 1999; Boxer, Huesman, Bushman et al, 2008; Stermer & Burkley 2012, not an exhaustive list). Further understanding of how and in what ways children and young people are affected by violent imagery - and how longstanding those effects may be - is debated.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Lecture)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology > HV0697 Protection, assistance and relief > HV0701 Children
Divisions: pre Nov-2014 > Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences > Law and Criminal Justice Studies
Depositing User: Ms Kristina Massey
Date Deposited: 19 Nov 2013 17:06
Last Modified: 11 Dec 2014 14:11

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00