Prime Time Law Enforcement: Crime Show Viewing and Attitudes Toward the Criminal Justice System
Unlike the many works which stress the antisocial effects of television, this volume argues that television crime shows promte social stability and control by reinforcing the perceived legitimacy of the current social and political order. The author explores the mainstream values of crime shows as determined through analyses of content and reviews various studies of television's portrayal of criminal justice. He focuses on mainstream views regarding law enforcement in a sample of adolescents and considers the groups that might be most susceptible to mainstreaming. Some of the factors considered in the value analyses are knowledge of criminal legal processes, support for and compliance with the legal system, support for civil liberties, images of police, fear of crime, trust in people, and political cynicism. Also included is a model which relates law enforcement attitudes to more general support for the political system.
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TELEVISION AND SOCIALIZATION
CONDITIONS AFFECTING MAINSTREAM VIEWS
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