December 8, 1975

Effect of Television Violence on Children and Youth

Author Affiliations

From the departments of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine, and the Children's Orthopedic Hospital and Medical Center, Seattle.

JAMA. 1975;234(10):1043-1046. doi:10.1001/jama.1975.03260230043021

One hundred forty-six articles in behavioral science journals, representing 50 studies involving 10,000 children and adolescents from every conceivable background, all showed that violence viewing produces increased aggressive behavior in the young and that immediate remedial action in terms of television programming is warranted.

Four major issues are covered: effects on learning, emotional effects, the question of catharsis, and effects on aggressive behavior. The research findings regarding each of these issues are summarized, as well as the controversial 1972 Surgeon General's report, Television and Social Behavior.

The time is long past due for a major, organized cry of protest from the medical profession in relation to what, in political terms, I consider a national scandal.

(JAMA 234:1043-1046, 1975)