The Analysis of Violence
and Aggressive Behavior
of Sailor Moon
City College of San Francisco
Dec 15. 2008
Media violence has always been a controversy. Studies have approved that the violence, or aggressiveness in cartoons may result in imitation in real life among children. This research was to examine how much aggression may occur in a cartoon and how do they differ regarding the characters’ qualities and genders. By content analysis, the observer observed every single movement in the cartoon and recorded the behaviors that were considered physically or verbally aggressive. The result showed that on average, bad characters had more physical aggressive acts compared to good characters, and male characters had more verbal aggressive acts compared to female characters.
Through out life we would be exposed to vast amount of media. Television, as one of the leading and most influential medias, exists in almost everyone’s life. Study have found that among medias that children are exposed to in a common family, television can be the one which grabs most of their attention: even infants (up to 18 months) can be captured by its moving scene; children up to elementary school (11 years) are especially attracted to vivid, fast-moving shows, which most of the time are, cartoons. (Josephson, 1955) Children can learn from observational learning—observing the model’s action, remembering and enacting the action; thus characters in cartoons are very likely to be imitated. Albert Bandura and his colleagues have generated studies and found positive correlation between film models and learning of aggressive behaviors of children. Indeed, the result of the Power Ranger Experiment concluded that children have greater possibility of enacting aggressive behavior after watching this “violent” cartoon; boys particularly have surprising ability to mimic precisely aggressive actions as in the show. (Boyatzis, Chris J., Matillo, Gina M., 2005) All of these draw our attention to what children are actually watching. Base on the study of experimental research, learning theories, I conduct this research to analyze the content of the cartoon. Is the phenomenon of immense violence actions exist in other popular TV cartoons? How much of aggressiveness do they contain? Are their any differences on the amount, and types of aggressive behaviors regarding characters’ genders or qualities? The hypotheses are: a) Bad characters in the cartoon, Sailor Moon will have more physical aggressive acts, on average, compared to the good characters; b) Male characters in Sailor Moon will have more verbal aggressive acts, on average, compared to the female characters. Methods
In the study I would watch and analyze the content of one episode of Sailor Moon. Sailor Moon was a successful Japanese anime series that had been translated and aired in different countries worldwide. It originally ran in Japan during 1992-1997, and been introduced to American audiences during 1995-2003. For the study I would randomly select two episodes from video sharing website, one for me familiarizing the cartoon, and the other, the experimental episode, for observing and coding aggressive behaviors. The coding procedure was to record the timing of every single aggressive behavior in the experimental episode, either physical or verbal, under the character that enacted. (See the coding sheet attached) To ensure I would watch the episode twice or more and repeat the same procedure. The experimental episode chosen was Episode 26, Series 1 of Sailor Moon. It was approximately 24 minutes. In this episode Sailor Moon’s middle school friend Osaka Naru was too sad to go to school because the one she loved, Nephrite, was dead. Sailor Moon and their classmate, Unimo Gurio called out Naru for a walk. While passing by a churchyard Naru couldn’t repress her grief and asked for help from a priest. At this time...
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