Större våld än nöden kräver? : Medievåldsdebatten i Sverige 1980-1995

Sammanfattning: This study is an attempt to analyze the social construction of media violence in the Swedish press debate 1980-1995. Altogether, 1029 articles from seven of Sweden's biggest daily and evening papers were qualitatively analyzed. Numerous claims refer to scientific 'proof' that media violence breeds personal aggression. However, a critical examination of the media effects research reveal that the alleged causal connection between violence in the media and real-life violence is the result of impaired data collection and/or improper methods of analysis. The analysis of the different claims about media violence uses the social problems construcivist theories as a point of departure. The descriptions of the objectionable media content usually has little in common with the actual films, videos and television programs available to the viewers. Claims-makers generally construct an image of the offensive media that stands in opposition to all that is considered 'good' or 'normal' — the films are described as 'brutal', 'sadist', 'racist', 'fascist' and 'sexist'. Several rhetorical techniques are used in the construction of media violence as a social problem, e.g. metaphors, extreme case formulations, contrasting devices and consubstantiations — the claim that different phenomenon basically are one and the same, most apparent in the claim that violence and pornogragphy are the same. Several different models for the conveying of media content to the audience, the alleged effect of this convayance and suggested actions regarding media violence are discerned. The study concludes with a summary of alternative causes as to why most people find media violence such a threatening phenomena.

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