The Link Between Media Violence and Real-Life Aggression

By on Sep 24, 2013 in Gender in the Media | 0 comments

In high school my psychology teacher asked the class whether we thought violent music contributed to violent crime in the real world. His question was prompted by the increasing number of school shootings taking place across the country, in particular the Columbine Shooting that occurred on April 20, 1999. News organizations later reported the shooters, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, were fans of Marilyn Manson’s goth music and possibly  were even inspired by his dark lyrics to carry out their massacre of 12 high school students and one teacher. Many other media pundits, however, said the theory was a load of crap. My classmates and I agreed. We reasoned other psychological and social factors were to blame for Harris and Klebold’s descent into madness and bloody vengeance (indeed, it was later determined Harris was probably a psychopath). I opined dark music could have an...

Jackie the Ripper: Where Are All the Female Serial Killers on TV?

By on Jun 22, 2013 in Gender in the Media | 2 comments

UPDATE: This post appeared on Feministe on July 10, 2013.  After you’re finished, read my follow up: The Link Between Media Violence and Real-Life Aggression. Dexter is entering its final season and that means soon we’ll have to say goodbye to TV’s favorite serial killer. The show is such a hit because its plot is unique. Instead of recycling the standard detective-chases-bad guy trope, the show’s writers gave us the righteous anti-hero Dexter, a serial killer who only kills other serial killers and evildoers who deserve to die. But if you’re wondering where you’ll get your weekly dose of gore when Dex finally goes off the air, never fear. You’ll still have your share of psychopaths to watch thanks to Fox’s The Following, NBC’s Hannibal, BBC’s The Fall and CBS’ The Mentalist. True, these follow the more traditional approach,...