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Violent Video Games and Aggression inAdolescents and Young AdultsINTRODUCTION
Violent actions in video games have sparked controversy for many years over whether or not the violence causes those who play the video games to become aggressive and violent themselves. Because most consumers and players of video games are adolescents and young adults, many parents are fearful of what their children are playing, and what it is they are being shown. So the question is, do violent video games cause violent behavior in adolescents and young adults? The answer is yes, they do cause violent behavior, because witnessing violence, as well as being the one causing it, causes a psychological change in one’s mental state, causing them to become more aggressive. This issue, if left unaddressed, may very well turn most of the younger generation into violent delinquents and criminals.ARGUMENTDo violent video games cause violent and aggressive behavior in adolescents and young adults? There are many points that can be made to support this, including: any amount of violence can increase aggressiveness, high levels of exposure to violent video games predicts a long term increase in aggressive behavior and personalities, different genders, both as players and in-game avatars, cause different levels of aggression, the time spent playing violent video games by adolescents and young adults is increasing, there are specific psychological effects thatviolent video games cause, the use of the General Aggression Model to show increased violent tendencies, and the use of realism and immersion in violent video games causes greater effects. However, there are some good effects of violent video games.Any Violence Brings More ViolenceMost video games have violence in them, even if it is an extremely small amount or of a cartoon style. Anderson, Gentile, and Buckley (2007) created an experimental laboratory study in which elementary school students and college students were randomly assigned to play either
a violent or nonviolent video game, which was then followed by a number of measurements, including a standard laboratory measure of aggressiveness, that resulted in the fact that even children’s games that contained cartoonish violence increased aggression for both the children and the college students, which means that even more developed brains are not immune to the effects of the violence, no matter how small.More Exposure Means Longer Term EffectsHigher levels of exposure to violent video games have predicted a long term increase in aggressive behavior. From the same article, Anderson et al. (2007) described two more studies, which show the effects of long term exposure to violent games. Study 2 was a survey study of high school students’ media habits and several aspects of aggressive personality. The main resultwas that high levels of exposure to violent video games predicted aggressive personality measures of anger, hostility, and aggressive and violent behavior, even after statistically controlling for theoretically relevant variables.
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Nonviolent video game, Video game controversy, Exelmans