HOW CAN VIOLENCE BE — USED AS A MEDIA SPECTACLE AND WHY?

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Introduction

The study on modern social and domestic violence is turning out to be a complex and challenging undertaking. Despite relying on the merging complicated tools and technology, violence in modern society is used as a media spectacle. This paper brings out the way violence can be used as a media spectacle as well as the reason behind the same. According to  the available research findings, it is clear and appropriate to state that modern violence and culture industries has multiplied media spectacle in all aspects including sites, films, and novel space. Media spectacle is itself becoming the key organising principle in modern economy, politics, and in other critical asocial activities (Sturken & Cartwright, 2007, p. 76). The internet-based economy has also modified and developed hit-tech spectacle useful as a mean of reproduction, promotion, in selling and in circulation of commodities. Although modern technology is with time becoming a complicated technology among a good number of modern consumers, contemporary business entrepreneurs are relying on their services to improve their productivity and effectiveness.

In addition to having a critical role in shaping and defining modern domestic and social violence, media has also be of essence in influencing social and political life in modern integrate society. Political and social conflicts are with time being played out on the screens of media culture that display spectacles such as political sex scandal, the explosive violence of every days activities, terrorist bombing, celebrity sex scandal as well as the sensational murder case that are apparent in modern modernised society (Pollock,  2006, p.51). Apart from offering expanding moments in modern experiences, media culture also presents additional materials for modelling thoughts, dreaming fantasy, and for constructing identity. Studies have further affirmed that, popular traditional entertainment has its roots in media spectacles (Beardsell, 2000, p. 97).

Theorist Jacques Lacan

As stated by a renowned theorist, Jacques Lacan, in his theory “gaze theory,” media has played a detrimental role in shaping violence in modern society. The gaze theory is also useful in describing the manner in which violence can be used as a media spectacle. The concept gaze is a technical term that was used in film theory in the late 1970s (Pollock, 2009, p. 27). So far, the concept has become a popular concept used by media theorist. The theory is used to define the influence of gazing on individual perceptions as well as the way people look at subjects and media presentations. The theory is also used in defining the manner in which audience views people that are presented in media. The concept gaze is also extended to the theory of feminist where it address the manner in which men look at women, the way in which women look at themselves, and other women as well as the effects that surrounds this observations. In the theory, male gaze is used in defining the manner in which male view their fellow women (Zehner, 2012, P. 67). On the other hand, female gaze describes the way in which females view their fellow men in the society.

Other social activities such as dominant public life, religion war, and sports were fertile and useful field for propagation of spectacles for many centuries. With the emergence of new information and multimedia technologies, techno spectacle has been shaping the trajectories and contours of modern society and culture. In developed and advanced capitalist nations such as United Kingdom and United States f America, media spectacles has turned out to be a defining feature not only for globalization but also for defining modern social conflict and violence (Fourie, 2008, p. 51).

As observed in “The cinema of David Cronenberg” culture has played critical role in increasing criminal activities and violence in modern society. In reporting domestic violence, journalists refer to some of the cultural concepts in justifying domestic violence. As observed in “The cinema of David Cronenberg” it is impossible and challenging to discuss any film without mentioning cultural beliefs and practices. All films revolve around a specific culture. In addition, in coming up with a realistic and attractive piece of episode, a good number of films relate modern occurrences with the existing social structure and practices. The manner in which the film “The cinema of David Cronenberg” is plotted is an indication on how media plays a critical role in advancing violence in modern society. “The cinema of David Cronenberg” uses violence in modern society to produce a productive and attractive film plotting with limited consideration of its impacts to the general society.

Based on the concept presented in the gaze theory, it is clear that some of the concepts that are presented in modern media can have harmful impacts on the way men view their fellow women. In cases of domestic violence, media present men as the heads of the family institutions (Kermit, 2008, p. 27). Media also justify the act of male being violent to women thus advancing family violence in the society. Women presume themselves as valueless people in the society who are supposed to be dominated and controlled by their male counterparts. These perceptions also undermine women effort of searching for their rights in the society (Lacan, & Seminar, 2008, p. 17). Repeating some of the outdated perception on the relationship between male and female in the society also increase domestic violence in modern society. Therefore, in order to minimise cases of domestic violence in modern society, media should present both men and women as equal players in the society.

Modern scholars have described the manner in which modern violence is used as a media spectacle by describing the way media reports domestic violence in various parts of the world. Based on the recent surveys, it is clear that there is endless concern in the manner in which media in the world present domestic violence. Although to some extent cultural beliefs and social practices has a role in defining the manners in which media present this form of violence, there are evidence to confirm that violence is used as a media spectacle. Apart from presenting the roots cause of the problem, modern media are criticised by social and psychological thinkers for reproducing some of the discouraging images. In most cases, some of the images that are presented in the media enlist and motivate domestic violence especially in less developed and in developing countries.

The use of violence as a media spectacle is also explained through psychoanalysis theory by Mulvey (1975). She makes the application of psychoanalysis theory, which is greatly applied in this case to show how violence can be used as a media spectacle. In this case, the psychoanalysis theory is used to show the way film fascination is reinforced mainly by patterns of fascination that already pre-exist at work (Mulvey, 1975). This happens specifically within an individual subject, as well as the social formations, which have moulded the individual. This aspect is said to act as the starting point in terms of the way films reflect, reveal, and play on the straight. It involves some socially established interpretations of sexual differences that control images, spectacles, as well as erotic modes of looking. The psychoanalytic theory is critically important as a weapon, a political weapon that demonstrates how the unconscious way of patriarchal society is structured (Mulvey, 1975).

The Django Unchained

The play The Django Unchained can also be used to describe the manner in which violence can be used as a media spectacle. The Django Unchained has also been effective in describing the manner in which violence can be used as a media spectacle. The film was released in December 25, 2012. Being one of the most popular movies in United States of America the film was directed and written by Quentin Trantino. In its plotting, the film present a story of a freed slave (Foxx) who went back to United States of American with bounty hunter in order to rescue his lovely wife from a rough and cruel plantation owner. In its entirety, the film is composed of endless cases of violence and killings (Edwards, 2012, P. 31). The main theme in the film is violence and gender inequality in the society. Initially, the main actor in the story Django was a slave who worked in one farm in America. The character was forced to separate with his wife to serve as slave in one popular plantation farm. Although his wife was weak to perform complicated job in the farm, she was also subjected to hard labour. Django and his wife were forced to work free in on plantation farm due to their racial orientation. In the plantation presented in the firm it was clear that white Americans owners of the means of production used people from other races as slave to provide free labour in their farms. In the attempt of rescuing his wife from the hand of brutal and violence plantation owner, Django was subjected to endless torture and ridicule. A good number of people who encountered him while in the process of rescuing his wife criticised Django for engaging in such unfruitful activities. Instead, they advised him to abandon her wife and look for another wife in the society.

Some of the images that are displayed in the media also serve as critical and useful reminder of pervasiveness of men’s violence against women in modern society. As a result, the media incite the public against women who are involved in domestic violence without considering the cause and the impacts of the incidence to the affected individuals and to the entire society. Some of the reported domestic violence cases force the society to blame the victim in cases of family violence. In other cases, instead of taking the required action to save the victim from future domestic violence, media coverage helps community members to turn a blind eye on such private matters. Based on the available statistical information, it is clear that media has played a regrettable role in accelerating domestic violence in modern society.

Instead of searching for a reliable intervention measures, the manner in which media present violence case advances psychological and mental problem on the victim (Lorimer, & Scannell, 1994, p.17). In addition, the modern sensationalist coverage can have a detrimental impact both on community development as well as on mental health o the affected individual. In the situation where news media acts voyeuristically by producing abusive images, they serve to normalise such violence thus undermining the significant of bringing unity and peace in the society. The act of normalising violence in modern society has not only increased cases of domestic violence in the society, but has also demonstrated the irresponsibility of modern media (Vipond, 2000, p.65). To counter the ever-increasing violence cases in modern society, journalists and other media personnel should be responsible in their reporting. Abiding by the code of ethics that define and guide media undertaking is also of critical importance especially in modern integrate and multicultural society. Consequently, it is appropriate to state that violence is used as a media spectacle in modern society.

The play The Django Unchained further reviewed that compared to their fellow male slaves, women slave were sold at a cheaper prices. In other situations plantation owners received women slaves free (Pack, 2012, p.93). Despite having discouraging and immoral theme, the film Django Unchained gained huge popularity especially in United States of America media. Young people and most specifically college students supported the content of the movie without considering its outcome both on women and to other vulnerable members of the society. To demonstrate its popularity among the United States media, the film was nominated among five influential academy awards including the popular Best Picture Awards. The writer of the film, Christoph Waltz also received numerous rewards both from media institutions and from film producers. Among some of the awards that the director of the film attained included the BAFTA award, the Golden Globe Award and the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

With reference to recent studies, it is also factual to state that the manner in which violence is viewed can result to desensitisation. Desensitisation can result to reduced tendency of searching for the most effective and sustainable intervention measures to avert the problem. The manner in which the media report domestic and social violence determines the actions that will be t.............


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