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Journal Article


Viemero V, Paajanen S. Aggressive Behav. 1992; 18(2): 109-116.


(Copyright © 1992, International Society for Research on Aggression, Publisher John Wiley and Sons)






The TV viewing habits of 391 8-year-old and 10-year-old Finnish children were related to their aggression, their aggressive and fear fantasies, and their dreams and fantasies about TV. Two measurements of aggression were made: peer-nominated aggression and self-rated aggression. TV viewing habits were measured by the amount of TV seen during a week and violence viewing, that is, how regularly violent TV serials were watched. Hypothetically, in addition to a direct relationship between TV viewing and aggression, there could also be an indirect relationship; for example, fantasizing might provide a link in the TV viewing-aggression relationship. There were significant positive correlations for the boys between TV viewing variables and aggression. There were also significant positive correlations between the amount of TV and televised violence viewing and fear and aggressive fantasies in general and with dreams and fantasies about actual TV programs seen. The correlations were less frequent for the girls. The same tendencies were evident for age groups and education. More frequent positive correlations were found with older children and regular classes than with younger children and music classes. The use of fantasy was also correlated positively with both peer-nominated and self-rated aggression. The results of the present study support the information-processing theory, which suggests that the more a child watches TV the more he or she has fantasies about the programs and rehearses the scenes viewed which, in turn, results in explicit aggressive behavior.


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