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Adolescents- threat or asset to society? Discuss how media portrayal of young people today and in the past influences the concept of adolescence. This assessment will look at the various media that was used in the past and is used presently

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Introduction

Adolescents- threat or asset to society? Discuss how media portrayal of young people today and in the past influences the concept of adolescence. This assessment will look at the various media that was used in the past and is used presently and consider the influence that it has on the perception of adolescence. Whether or not they are portrayed as an asset or threat to society will also be looked at. The essay will discuss both past and present media influences and state how there has been a change in both the use of media and the growth. Also why the media portray adolescence in particular ways. The way in which teenagers view themselves will also be briefly touch on. There is an array of media that produces information about adolescents these can include radio, newspapers, magazines and television documentaries. The media tends to create stereotypical images of young people that generalise and brand all young people even though they are part of a much broader group. Young people often find ways to express themselves, which are different to the generally accepted culture of their society. The various means by which they express themselves and mix are known as youth culture. (Jahsonic.com, 1996) There is no single youth culture in modern society, instead there is a variety of different youth subcultures. There are many reasons for this, such as there are more styles available and also a higher disposable income in family households ...read more.

Middle

of young people in mainstream schools had been in trouble with the police in the past year, and the vast majority the crimes committed were not violent crimes. Also this year young people aged 15-17 were surveyed and 52% of them had been the victim of a crime in the past year. In a survey in 2003 for Nestle Family Monitor 64% of 11-18 year olds said that they would not trust a journalist to tell them the truth therefore they do not believe what they read in the newspapers. (MORI, 2004) Through the use of television documentaries the media portrays adolescents in a bad light they seem to concentrate on the mistakes and negative issues instead of the good things that young people do. On Channel 4 there was a series of programmes on recently called "Brat Camp" the teenagers that took part were described as being rude, spoilt and lazy the youths. There is similar programme starting on BBC THREE called "Teen Angels" and they describe the programme as "taking the rage out of teenagers" this is quite a general assumption and leads us to believe that all teenagers have angry outbursts. On the web page Star Now there was an advertisement for yet another television show wanting angry teenagers aged 14-19 the advertisement read " Don't make me angry!...just regular teens that have trouble in keeping control during verbal arguments..." ...read more.

Conclusion

(Children's Express, 2004) Ourselves as consumers must be cautious of what is reported in the media as they tend to focus on sensational, dramatic findings or they may even twist the findings to suit their own agenda. The adolescent perspective will not always be used and when used can be overshadowed by headlines and the rest of the article simply to sell newspapers. (Santrock, J. 2005) The majority of adolescents see young people as a group in a positive light and an asset to society and wish that the medias portrayal would reflect this. Positive stories about young people in the media tend to be about individual achievements and charity work but these stories are eclipsed by the attention drawn to the negative stories through the use of larger headlines. In conclusion, the media portrays the adolescents of today as a threat by highlighting a violent minority group who revel in the glorification of bad behaviour and as a result all young people are viewed in this way by society. In the past the media did not influence the view of adolescence in society as much as today because the media now uses lurid tales of adolescence to sell newspapers for them. It is easier for the media to show the flaws of young people than to illustrate the good qualities that they have and bring to society. While adolescence is being portrayed so badly by the press it is going to be hard for the youth of today to be seen as an asset to society which they really are. ...read more.

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