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The Article "Boys guilty of murder - Detention without limit for 'Unparalleled Evil'-" comes from the Guardian Newspaper on Thursday 25th November 1993 and was written by Edward Pilkington.

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BOYS GUILTY OF BULGER MURDER - DETENTION WITHOUT LIMIT FOR 'UNPARALLELED EVIL' ARTI MEHTA 1. The Article "Boys guilty of murder - Detention without limit for 'Unparalleled Evil'-" comes from the Guardian Newspaper on Thursday 25th November 1993 and was written by Edward Pilkington. The article has three underlying psychological assumptions. The first assumption is that exposure to violent video films (such as Child's play 3) is a contribution for a reason as to why the two boys abducted and murdered two-years-old James Bulger. As the just is quoted as saying '...I suspect exposure to violent video films may be in part an explanation'. Films such as 'Child's Play 3' have been cited widely as examples of how screen violence can induce copycat actions among viewers. The boys could have been attempting to imitate aggressive behaviour they had seen on the videos. Children imitating aggressive acts has been studied by Bandura in his laboratory experiment 'Bashing Bobo'. The second underlying psychological assumption is closely linked in with that of the first one, because, aswell as the violent behaviour being imitated, the movies could also cause psychological reactions in the brain to make the watcher of the violent movies (in this case the two boy killers) ...read more.


There were three major conditions which were a control group, a group which was exposed to an aggressive model and one which was exposed to a passive model. Firstly the children observed the model playing within the experiment room , and then the children themselves were observed playing of their own accord. From the outcome of the study which was mainly that children mostly repeated a considerable number of aggressive actions, mainly girls more than boys, Bandura concluded that aggressive behaviour can be learnt and we can learn by being witnesses to the behaviour of others and basically we can learn through imitation and reinforcement from role models; which the two Bulger killers could have been affected by. The second piece of evidence which is relevant to the next assumption is that of the field study conducted by Parke et al (1977) where juvenile offender from three different institutions were split into two groups and on each of the following five days were show either violent or non-violent films, all judged to be 'equally exiting'. Trained observers coded the amount of violence the boys showed during the days of the study and found that boys watching the violent films were more aggressive than those who had watched neutral films and in addition to this, the boys who had seen the violent films were likely to give what they believed to be an electric shock to opponents in a game when provoked. ...read more.


This would bring aggression due to imitation down to a lower level than it was before and cut down the growing number of aggressive individually growing up and turning to aggressive crime. With regards to the second assumption I would suggest that the Film ratings would become more strictest and ages restricted to a higher level according to the amount of violence being shown in the film, and also stricter guidelines on renting and selling films of such nature, then maybe children like Veneables and Thompson wouldn't get hold of and be influenced by them. In relation to the third and final assumption, I would suggest that the government would provide more benefits to those with larger families and more social care and advice to those who request and are in need of it, so maybe families such as those of the murderers' wouldn't have been at such loose ends and more devotion, attention and care would have been spent on the bringing up of the children and their parents would actually have time to understand and examine their child if they feel there is an underlying psychological problem and have it dealt with instead of letting it fester and escalate to such a scale that their children would result in committing murder. No. ...read more.

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