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J Pers Soc Psychol. 1990 Jan;58(1):156-63.

Role of cognitive-emotional mediators and individual differences in the effects of media violence on aggression.

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Department of Psychology, University of Missouri, Columbia 65211.


Two experiments were conducted to test the hypothesis that observation of media violence elicits thoughts and emotional responses related to aggression. In Experiment 1, highly violent videotapes elicited more aggressive cognitions than did a less violent tape. This effect was moderated by the trait of stimulus screening. In Experiment 2, aggressive cognitions increased with the level of violence in the videotape, and physical assaultiveness influenced this effect. Hostility and systolic blood pressure were higher in response to the most violent video than in response to the other two. Hostility was influenced by emotional susceptibility and dissipation-rumination, and systolic blood pressure was influenced by emotional susceptibility and assaultiveness.

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