February 28, 2000
Volume 52, No. 23
Conference to explore violence in the media
By Peter Mills
A recent study on media violence examined the top television series, movies and music videos of the 1998-1999 season and found that one act of serious violence was presented every four minutes. Robert Agnew, director of Emory's Violence Studies Program and professor of sociology, said the upcoming Confronting Media Violence Conference "should do much to shed light on the important and troubling issue of media violence."
The conference, to be held March 2 from 1 to 5 p.m. in WHSCAB Auditorium, will feature a panel of academic, government and media experts presenting different views on such issues as the saliency of media violence and whether the much-publicized V-chip is a real solution to the supposed problem.
Agnew alluded to the ongoing controversy over the effects of media portrayals of violence on their audiences. "Most researchers agree that media violence has some effect on violent cases," he said. "Certain researchers claim that media violence only has a small, even trivial effect on violent behavior in our society. And there is some concern that the focus on media violence will divert attention from other, more important causes of violence--poverty, family problems and gangs."
Greta Van Susteren, co-host of CNN's "Burden of Proof," will moderate the conference, which will be divided into two sessions. The first will address the effect of media violence on violent behavior and will open with Art Kellerman, chair of emergency medicine, giving an "Overview of Leading Causes of Violence" to attendees.
Other speakers during the first session will be:
The second session will address what is being done to regulate media violence and whether these efforts are proving effective. Speakers for the second session will be:
The conference is free and open to the public. For more information or for reservations, call 404-778-7777.