New book claims fantasy video game violence not such a bad thing



In her new book The Trouble with Boys, former Newsweek education reporter Peg Tyre argues schools and parents do boys a disservice when they rein in boys’ natural play that involves fantasy violence — like a little game of cops and robbers. “There is a palpable sense,” she writes, “that the ways in which boys play need to be suppressed or rigidly controlled.” Such control, she argues, inhibits boys’ ability to learn and understand the world. Violent video games, she says, could be beneficial as an outlet for naturally violent tendencies.

5 Responses to “New book claims fantasy video game violence not such a bad thing”

  1. A. S. Kohn says:

    Allowing “boys to be boys” is one thing. But, to believe that playing violent video games somehow helps boys – or girls for that matter – is ridiculous. What about all the scientific research that shows playing these violent – and sometimes sexually charged – games suppresses empathy and changes the brain chemistry? I would not want my sons to grow up learning it is OK to shoot robbers, zombies, or policemen.

  2. Andrew says:

    Adolf Hitler played “Cowboys and Indians”.

    Guess you get what you play for.

  3. Mark Twain says:

    I would have to disagree with that. Newer games let the user play as an evil character. This can not be good.

  4. Mads says:

    I agree, I play alot of violent video games my self. And it’s great to get a way to let go of all the frustration that may be building up inside me by blasting som poor thing to pieces in a game. And to say that all who play violent video games learns that to kill things is okay, is wrong. Considering the amount of young people who play violent video games today there should be thousands if not millions of extremely violent gamers out there today. Of course there are those who can’t keep video games and real life apart, those are the dangerous one. But there alot more can make that difference, so please don’t say that violent video games are bad and must be removed from the shelves (I know no one has said this but I’m sure you have been thinking it), they might just save the world for young people who dosen’t know where to focus their anger.

  5. Serov says:

    To A.S Kohn: There are numerous conflicting pieces of research concerning this topic. For one, when it comes to this information the researchers come up with a correlation between violent video games and increased aggression and violence. The key word there is correlation. That does not say cause. For example, you could say that the season when ice cream sales increase, so do shark attacks, implying a correlation between the two statistics. That does not mean that increased ice cream sales cause an increase in shark attacks.

    You, as a parent, need to take hold of what your children play. You need to know what they play, and what these games are all about. If you are doing your job as a parent, you should know exactly what these games are all about and what they promote.

    If you are a proper parent, you should also have taught your children the difference between virtual violence and real violence.

    (Oh, research has indicated that violent video games tend to effect those that are from broken households and who have already a disposition of violence. Those who are stable of mind have found to be unfazed by such games)

    To Mark Twain: It is only bad if you allow your kids to play these games under age. As the parent, it is up to you to make the decision to allow your kids to play the game. I’m sure you wouldn’t allow your 8 year old to play something like GTA IV. It is up to you to ensure that the proper people are playing the game. Games like GTA IV are marketed for ADULTS. ADULTS. Now, if your an adult and you can’t tell the difference between real violence and virtual violence, then they should be taken in for psychiatric help.

    Violence in this society is everywhere, and this new medium of expression is no different as when violent plays and violent television first hit the main stream. It happens every time. People just need to learn the limits of this medium and allow their children to ensure that they are not exposed too quickly to interactive violence.