376 Students: I want you to print the essay that follows
and write comments on it. Comment however you like, both in the
margins and at the end; we'll then go through the essay together
and discuss your comments.
As you write comments, note any strategies you would use for
tutoring the student. All you know about the two writers who coauthored
the paper is this: their teacher told you, when asking you to
comment on the paper, that "they are lazy and don't want
to revise anything I give them. Of course they chose to work together.
Here's my assignment." Now, you have the paper and will meet
the students in conference tomorrow.
The writers of this paper read "Pornoviolence," Thomas
Wolfe's essay about violence and the media. You needn't know it
to assess the writers' response.
Wolfe's essay is dated 1967. Things have changed since then,
Your group should devise a contemporary definition and description
for "pornoviolence." In doing so, draw from/argue with
Wolfe's essay, especially his idea that pornoviolence is dangerous,
dangerous enough to censor, because it glorifies, even encouraging
violence by letting the audience see things through the aggressor's
eyes. Your essay should be at least 2 pages, double-spaced. Put
both of your names on top.
- On the topics of pornography and music lyrics, both of us
had the same conclusions. Woolf claimed
- that Pornoviolence occurs when a viewer of a film experiences
violence from the perspective of an
- agrressor. We agree with this defintion, but we felt that
Woolf didn't offer a solution to this problem,
- one that occurs now in films and in music with violent lyrics,
such as "gansta rap." We both agreed
- that films should have limits on the amount of violence.
We believe that the viewers should not be
- exposed to excesssive violence and pornography, especially
people under eighteen years old. On
- the other hand, we viewed the topic of music as being an
act that one individual would enjoy.
- Everyone has their own preference as to the type of music
that they choose to listen to. The factors
- that helped us to assess each situation, were: moral values,
opinions, and environment.
- When people view movies the perception that they have are
often affected by their moral values.
- For example, if you witness Freddy Krueger murder someone
on the movie screen, one person
- may feel that it was well deserved, but anothter person may
perceive it as a tragic occurrence. It all
- depends on the type of morals that were instilled in that
individual's life while growing up. In the same
- way, some people may view swearing as being inappropriate
for music lyrics. If you hear a lot of
- swearing as a child, you might think that morally, cursing
is okay, even needed, to get the message
- across. So then you won't think too much about hearing it
or using it yourself. However, others had
- their mouths washed out with soap whenever they cussed. They
won't want to hear any cursing in
- films or in music. Their moral values will cause them to
be revolted by Pornoviolence. If these people
- hear violent lyrics in songs, they probably will change the
radio station or choose not to buy the CD.
- On the other hand, those who are not bothered by cursing
can make the individual choice to buy or
- not buy music based upon their own likes and dislikes.
- In addition to moral values, opinions are also a major factor.
Everyone is entitled to their own
- opinion, whether it is viewing a movie that contains pornoviolence
or listening to music that has
- explicit lyrics.For films, children are an exception. Some
people will complain about freedom
- of speech here, but the issue isn't censoring the movies
or music, it is about what people are
- permitted to see or hear at certain ages.Young people have
opinions and a right a express them,
- but society chooses to protect them from harm because they
are not judged to be capable of
- making adult decisions yet. Movies are more dangerous than
music here, because where a song
- might say "kill that cop" a movie can show it step
by step and even show the killer getting away
- without being caught. Some kids will sneak into adult movies
or can rent them easily, so those
- making or distributing films may have to be limited in some
cases. Such measures could include
- having a tougher rating system, enforcing the one we already
have, or restricting the sale of all
- violent or pornographic videos to adults only.
- Lastly, the individual's environment plays an important role
in the viewing of movies as well as
- listening to music. For example, if someone grew up in a
tough neighborhood, they may be
- more prone to view or listen to violence, as compared to
someone who grew up in a rural
- area or the suburbs. Kids from the ghetto have gotten tougher
from the experience of seeing
- or knowing about violence; once they are adults they are
more capable of seeing a violent
- film or listening to violent or pornographic music without
it having a lasting effect on them.
- By the time they are adults, if they are already willing
to commit violence, seeing a movie
- won't encourage them or discourage them.
- In assessing each situation, we believe that films should
have limitations, especially for
- children, while music should be up to the individual. We
don't think that except in certain
- cases the price of censorship is worth the cost to society.
Commentary Exercises |