Affects Of Superheroes To Chil Essay, Research Paper
Since the publishing date of the first illustrated books, the hero characters have taken their places in the daily life of the people. In fact, many hero characters had existed for centuries through the history. They had been living in tales and epic stories and being spread by the word of mouth between people but they were not as effective as the visual ones.
Especially after the rapid increases in the film technology, the film industry started to create new superheroes. After a while, film makers became aware of the profitability of series films for the superheroes. Many of the films of specific superheroes are produced by a sequential name. The best examples for these type of films are superman or the Indiana Jones series. There are sequential names like superman I, II, III and so on.
Addition to these films, the strength of the image of the superheroes are supported by some items that help these heroes to be more familiar by the public. These items have a broad spectrum of types from signed photos to coffee cups and from balloons to t-shirts with a picture of hero printed on. These promotion facilities have reached to their peak point by the advertising campaigns with these superheroes. Hollywood became one of the biggest production place for these heroes since the early years of the American film industry and it s effects are still on the whole film industry.
At the beginning. These heroes , they are either cartoon characters or a film character from TV or cinema, used to give messages to direct people to good behaviors and they were good nominees to be presented as a sample of right personality. A good example for this trend can be found in the life story of Arnold Schwarzenneger who is the founder and the actor of terminator series. At the days of the early superheroes, when Arnold applied to Hollywood producers for its terminator film projects, he was refused by thoughts that his films will not be successful but the public values have changed very rapidly and people, especially children liked these films very much in which many people are being killed by a superhero who do not obey the orders. The trend towards these type of films have increased by in a huge amount. Today we can see that at least a dozen of people, no matter rather they are good or bad guys , are being killed. At the beginning of a new century, the statistics are trying to find the average people being killed in the films.
The cartoon films, which are mainly produced to address the children, have even many scenes with violence. Only superiority over Hollywood films is the immortal characters even they have been in many bomb explosions or fell down from the skyscrapers but this does not help to decrease the amount of violence being transferred from the films to children.
When we talk about children, especially the psychologists categorize them into several groups like infant stage, early childhood and pre-school stage. In this report the term child will be used for all the children from approximately 6 years old to the early years of youth stage. As the results of certain effects in the early childhood can be observed in the older stages, even in the maturity stage, the negative effects of superheroes on children that will be mentioned in the next sections is something should be observed by all psychologists.
Children starts to show a meaningful interest to characters on the pictures or TV at the age of 6 or 7. In these years, child can identify that these characters are not real. As the time passes, the boys gain interest towards characters acting adventure and war. Girls are towards dance, song, animals and comics. Also in the forward stages boys have more tendency to man heroes and girls to women heroes.
Superheroes are make-believe TV or film characters with imaginary powers. Sometimes they fly or have extraordinary strength. They are superhuman, beyond human limits. These heroes are not always characters like superman. Sometimes an ordinary police cop with higher capabilities than his/her colleagues can be named as a superhero.(Papalia 30)
Using their super powers, they fight imaginary and real life problems like crime, greed and drugs. Superheroes entertain with excitement and adventure. They can have fun even in very dangerous situations. They can overcome all the difficulties and obstacles. They fight for the freedom, welfare or the goodness of other people.
At the last decade, some of the films which are putting the bad guys into the stage of superheroes can be seen. They are rare but in an increasing trend. When these type of films increase in number and receive acceptance from the public and especially from the children, higher trends in the criminal cases can be observed in the future. These type of heroes do not give out even the messages given out by good heroes as honesty or resistance to badness.
The superheroes are being created mainly by media. TV and cinema films are at the first place. The books, cartoons, magazines and computers by internet and computer games can create superheroes. Any superhero created by any of the resources below can also be used and improved by another resource. Mario brothers created by Nintendo company for a computer game then become movie stars for a Hollywood production. This is a good example how a superhero can be re-created or supported by other resources. (http://www.media.wareness.ca/eng)
Addition to all these, some of the other sectors can promote superheroes in order to increase their sales or fame. Some might use these heroes in their logo or some might serve them as a gift to customers like happy meal menu in Mc Donald s restaurants for children. Different toys of superheroes can be presented to the consumers of this menu. The important point in this case is the potential consumers of this product is completely children. This shows how the other sectors can improve the image of a superheroes and as a result of this improvement, they enhance the effects of the superheroes over other people and especially over children
Identification is the effort to be as anyone in the same group. In the first years of the childhood, the child takes his/her father or mother as a model to resemble to. On the forward stages, usually teachers takes the places of parents in the identification process of the child. As it can be the basic factor in choosing a model for identification is to be in the same place or habitat. As the superheroes are entering to daily life of the children more, in other words as the share of the superheroes in the daily life of the children are being more dominant with respect to the other models like teachers or parents with the help of technology, the children identify themselves with these heroes. They accept the behaving of these heroes as the truths and reject the other ones. At the end of this period, most of the behavings of superheroes are welcomed by the child into its personality.
Isolation is one of the basic reason for the increase of effects of superheroes over children. The improvements in the technology and the life conditions in the cities are forcing people into an isolated life. Children in these type of habitats are also sharing the same destiny. Children are turning their faces to the superheroes to escape from this isolation and act as these heroes are their friends. This effect is more obvious on children with working parents and if they are single child. A superhero from the computer or TV is entering to the child s lonely life to share its isolated life.
Some of the basic needs of the children to be fulfilled are explained in the isolation and the identification part above. The lack of fulfillment of a children s needs by normal ways makes a child approaches to imaginary fulfillment s as superheroes. Except these there are some more needs of children. Children need wisdom, guidance and authority. Also they feel need to be protected, wants activity and excitement. In the routine daily life it is very hard to see observe these from people around them. When they can not find what they required, they change their route to the superheroes which can serve all these by an exceeding amount even they are imaginary .(Yavuzer.+ocuk Psikolojisi 66)
Not only children but everybody can be effected by the superheroes in TV, cinema or in any printed material. The only difference of the effect of the superheroes over children is how intensively it is. Children have potentials to be effected easily by an outer source because of lack of knowledge and life experience. Also their brains are not well developed enough to process these type of effects under the light of logical facts and come to a conclusion. This makes children easy targets to take under affect. On the early ages of the childhood, the door of the brain of a child is completely open to learn. This potential for learning should be used in right way. The high potential to learn on these ages might be used in a useless way because of the effects of superheroes.
The general overview about the effects of superheroes on the children are presented above. There are many effects of superheroes on children. Some of them might be good if the superhero is used in a good way by the creator. This creation might be done sometimes by a scenario writer or an author, sometimes film director. Although superheroes have positive effects, they usually have negative effects especially on children. Below are listed some of these negative effects of superheroes on children.
Today s superheroes are being represented as they are good guys except some marginal ones which are in the bad guys sections. Freddy from the Elm street is a good example for this. While all these heroes are performing good work, they kill many murderers, thieves or outlaws. They are clapped while they are doing these and people think that they are doing well and food examples by their courage or skills, but some points are being missed meanwhile especially about the psychological and social effects of these scenes on children.
Many people agree that the superheroes are killing to protect the justice or to provide the security of the innocent people but while they are doing all these, the spectators or the readers see many crimes from murder to rape. In our times, even these type of crimes are more familiar to adults than before and if we evaluate the child psychology under the light of these facts, we can see how much poor the condition is. (Yavuzer. +ocuk ve Su 88)
Raising Children in a Socially Toxic Environment states that the children, who can see a lot of crimes while watching their favorite superhero are being effected in a bad manner, even though the superhero has superiority over all those bad guys who caused this crimes, this does not to provide children to be kept away from the crime in the film or the book. When a child witnesses this much crime everyday, they are becoming familiar with all these crimes. The crimes are not so frightening actions for them. They look like a routine daily action. According to some surveys, in the primetime period on TV, on the times at which millions of children between the age two and seven have possibility of being in front of the TV screen, there could be observed a crime at each 16,3 minutes. This period is getting smaller and smaller every day which means more crimes. According to another survey, a child can witness to approximately 11.000 crimes until he/she is fourteen years old. This amount is also in an constant increase.
Even the 94 % of the cartoon films have violence or crimes. When we have a look at a near past, it was enough for a superhero to have a slap on the face of the bad guy to make the child laugh. Today in order to create the same effect on a children, in other words in order to entertain the child, the superhero in the cartoon film must put a bomb in to the mouth of the bad creature. Just a slap means nothing. This trend makes some volunteers, who are spending great effort to establish child TVs, think for a solution. Even the programs for prepared for children have a high amount of violence. (55-102)
Superheroes may be fighting for good ideas but a child has a very weak instincts for making any distinction between the bad or good. If children are grow up familiar with the crime, in the future they will not be aware of the crimes around them and they will not show any reaction against them.
In the media in which the superheroes act, this may be a film or a book, there are a lot of criminal techniques presented. Sometimes these techniques can be seen while the enemies or the bad guys using them and sometimes while superheroes using. When we have a look at the children around us, it is not easy to find a children who do not know how to load a pistol or how to activate a hand bomb.
While a superhero loading his/her pistol to fight against the bad guys, he /she also teaches all these to the children besides familiarizing them with the crime. When a child is effected psychologically by familiarizing with the crime, he/she is a passive danger for the society. Although the social relations are also corrupted, these children can still stay passive without ant activation but when they are given the knowledge to be activated, hey became active potentials for the crime.
In many films, the superheroes are in the role of a thief. This character is being used to show the amount of high intelligence of this superhero have while stealing something. As a result of watching the right films and reading the right books, it is very easy to learn all the techniques about the science of theft by the help of teachers known as superheroes. If a person who have grown up with the superheroes since his/her early childhood, closes his/her eyes and think what he/she knows about criminal activities, he/she will be identify how serious the social and the psychological effects of superheroes to the children. If the increasing intensity of this type of hazardous info flow is taken into consideration, the picture can be seen more easily.
Superheroes are usually work alone, live alone and gain all their success alone. They always fight for the welfare of the public but the public rejects. When a child feels him/herself close to a superhero, he/she perceive the public as an opposition in front of the superhero. As he identified him/herself with that hero, the child also feels as the public against him/herself . (Papalia 38)
This causes the child to feel hate to the public and lost trust over public. He/she becomes suspicious about all the interactions with the public and this takes the child into a social paranoia and increase the amount of isolation from the public. According to the psychologists, the disconnection from the public especially in the early childhood of a person, no matter what the reason for this disconnection is, has negative effects over the social and psychological health of the child.
The superheroes exists because everybody needs them. They sometimes protects the innocence and sometimes provide justice. When a child grows up in a imaginary world where justice is being provided by superheroes instead of security forces and where the security is being provided by superheroes instead of security forces. Most of the problems in this imaginary world is beyond the skills of security forces so a superhero is needed to create a miracle and do what the others could not do although they have to do.
As a result of this imaginary world build by superheroes, the children s subconscious is filled with a feeling of lack of trust towards the security forces and the justice system because they were not enough or even week when compared with his/her superhero. One step further the idea of the justice and security forces against the superhero causes to grow up a hate towards the security forces and justice system. In the future this hate will not allow the person to act freely about the security and the justice problems. The lack of trust against these two important members of public life will be in front of him/her and will be kept between the public and these two members of that public. (Keats 67)
The actions that superheroes are performing are mostly dangerous or sometimes these actions are impossible. In many cases the some professionals are performing the role for the superhero for dangerous parts of the films. This is the case in films, in cartoon films and the others the situation is more conflicting. These type of cartoon characters or computer game characters can perform actions as hard as the creator of that character wants. They can fly, become immortal, etc. The same actions are sometimes also available in cinema or TV films in science fiction types.
As the perception of children is weak compared with the elder stages of humans, they can easily perceive these actions as possible ones. If he/she attempts to do any of these, it may cause physical harms and followed by them the child might have physical problems caused by the feeling of unsuccessfulness. The children will normally try to behave like their superhero whenever possible. They are choosing their costumes according to the appearance of the superhero or even wear directly it s costumes. They try to walk in that way and they try to talk in the manner their hero is talking.
If these are normal, and if the families are allowing these, the dangerous actions of the superhero might be also tried to copy by the children because children have a very weak sense and logic in estimating the future outcomes of their behaving.
Superheroes carry the criminal characters with themselves because superheroes need them to be a superhero. Although there is a general tendency in film industry towards the representation of these type of characters as bad guys, many of these criminals have specialties to receive sympathy from the public. If it is taken into consideration that the ethical values of the children are weaker with respect to adults, it is not strange for a child to feel sympathy towards a criminal character in the film.
Sometimes the criminal characters might be a superhero or an actor who acts as a superhero in the film might have some crimes in his daily life. These type of events can be fallowed from the press by a child and because of lack of identification between the real and the fiction world, the children can feel sympathy towards the criminals because of this superhero character in the film. (Yavuzer 93)
The aggressive behaving of the hero, like inability at keeping their temper, their rude and aggressive ways to cope with the situations and their enemies characters reflects an aggressive behavior to the viewer or to the reader. The most effect is received by the children and at the development stage , they directly absorb those type of behaving in their personality.
It is a fact that children grew up in an aggressive atmosphere are most probably having aggressive persons in the future. This shows that children can be effected from the behaving around them. This rule does not change even it is created by imaginary characters like superheroes. Aggressive behaviors are very hard to cope with when they placed into the personality of a child in the early days of the childhood. After this stage, this aggressive personality controls the development of the persons psychological health.(Gleitman 57)
The negative effects of superheroes are getting heavier as the technological improvements occur in all areas. The new technologies are helping to create superheroes with better specialties. Better appearance, more strength. More intelligence and higher skills are the gifts of new technologies to superheroes. The film technology is making the superheroes more real to the viewers, TV technology is insisting on not allowing the children to be without the superheroes. The computer technology and internet is putting the superheroes in front of the children also in digital world. So the world is getting harder and harder for living without superheroes especially for the children.
Through out the report, the hazardous negative effects of the superheroes on the children are explained. These are mostly the problems effecting the personality of the person. As the personality starts to take its shape from the childhood stage, some of the negative effects from the superhero characters can directly influence the personality.
Starting from 7 years old children, the negative effects of the superheroes are being seen. The superheroes are everywhere in the life of us. As the new generations are being educated by superheroes instead of teachers or parents, it is getting harder to identify the negative effects of the superheroes because it is getting harder to find anybody grown up away from the superheroes to make objective comments. As we can not ask a fish to describe what the water is, we can not also ask the negative effects of superheroes to a person grown up under the negative effects of superheroes.
Children are tasting the violence by the superheroes. A child used to take his parents or teachers as a model in his/her growing up stage but today, from the very early years, parents and teachers are replaced by superheroes. The promotion campaigns in different sectors ,from food to textile, are enhancing this trend. The superheroes are with the children even in their meal.
Children are very familiar with the violence and crime. While superheroes were killing their enemies, the children had learned all the type of crimes, how can a successful crime be, which weapons are needed and how they are used.
The superheroes also took the place of the security forces and the justice system. The superheroes who are above the low and fighting for the rights of people created an understanding against the security forces and the justice system inside the subconscious of the children. New generations are loosing their trusts for these members of the public. Also the public had received a share from this lack of trust.
Superheroes are harmful to the psychological and the social development of the child. These heroes can be in a Hollywood film or in a cartoon. It does not change anything.