Advanced Essay #3- Light on the Shadow

Violence. A word that has a negative history. Death, war, strife, anger, sadness, loss, brutality and many more are things that all can come from violence. But just because violence has negative associates doesn’t mean it is a negative thing. Look at this definition for violence, “Violence is the intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, against oneself, another person, or against a group or community, which either results in or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, maldevelopment, or deprivation.” (Violence in the Media and Entertainment, 2016).Violence is something that must be inflicted on someone but if you read that definition, the word evil or bad is not used. Does this mean not all violence is bad? Short answer, yes. Violence can be used in a positive way like to entertain or teach. It can also be used to get a positive outcome like arresting a murder. Violence is seen as a negative in the world but it is not always negative. As stated before, violence can be used to entertain. In the movie, Box Office, as of April 27th, 2019, Avengers Endgame is breaking records for the amount of money being made from people buying tickets. The movie is about superheroes who lost their friends in a war for magic stones by an alien titan and must fight to get their friends back. The movie is oozing with violence, but are people leaving that theatre traumatized? No, they are leaving entertained, and hopefully, they enjoyed those three hours. Another example is Boxing and MMA fighting. Those are sports where two people engage in hand to hand combat willingly. According to HBO, roughly 820,000 on average are watching a boxing match in person or live.”The most widely watched live bout on HBO of 2018, a middleweight title fight between Gennady Golovkin and Vanes Martirosyan, drew 1.3 million viewers.”( HBO Says It Is Leaving the Boxing Business-nytimes).People pay good money to see them fight and the fighters get paid good money to fight. People who watch fights are entertained. They have repurposed something negative and made it positive. Violence is also used to teach. One way to discipline a child when they were being naughty was with a good ole wack on the cheek or hand. Or in some cases, a butt whooping. Speaking from my own experience I know I am a better, more sensible person because I received the occasional spanking. Not only parents but teachers used this method as well, back in the day when kids would misbehave, it was normal for a teacher to wack a child with a ruler on the hand. I bet a lot of you teachers reading this still wish it was. Violence is even transferred to our children shows. Shows like Power Rangers or PJ Mask; These shows and many like them are made to teach children about friendship and morals. When the bad guys do bad things or put others in harm’s way, the hero’s fight to bring them to justice, even in cartoons that air on Disney junior. In shows like this, violence is used to show kids that if you do bad things you get disciplined; not groom them to be criminals. Acts that may be seen as brutal or cruel are usually not unprecedented, meaning there’s always a meaning behind it. Violence can happen for both good and bad reasons. One good reason is self-defense. There are many situations where self-defense is warranted like breaking and entering, robbery, bullying, protection of others and self; the list can go on. Although some of these issues can be “talked out” or worked out in a non-vicious way it is not certain and since we are a violent species we will naturally gravitate o the more ungoverned method. Humans often succumb to their primitive nature when riled up or follow instincts when scared and before we were civilized, we were like wild animals. According to research by Steven Stinker, ” bodies and brains have “direct signs of design for aggression,” and that men, in particular, bear the marks of “evolutionary history of violent male-male competition.” (black Slate, 2002, Steven Stinker); the things that usually got us to that state was wild animals. Usually, wild animals are vicious and dangerous so when you see one in its natural habitat, you need to be ready to defend yourself. You are in their world and in their world, it’s kill or be killed. Wanting to live warrants violence and it is those ideals and mindsets that transfers to today when we feel threatened and feel the need to defend. Violence is like Thanos, (WARNING AVENGERS ENDGAME JOKE!!!!!!)is inevitable. It’s apart of our everyday lives. The average adolescent has an 80% chance of witnessing violence on their phone or TV (Violence in the Media and Entertainment ). Violence can’t be deleted. Just like Sir Isaac Newton says:” for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”. Where the there is good there is bad, where there is light there is dark, where there is sausage pizza there will be pineapple pizza, and where there is peace there will be violence. Instead of trying to take it out our society we should embrace it so that we may control it. Allow the light to shine over the shadow. “I would rather control the weapon then not have it so that our enemy can” (Jayden Tull 2019).

Sources: Gabbatiss, Josh. “Are Humans Inherently Violent?”, 21 Mar. 2019,

Matthews, Wallace. “HBO Says It Is Leaving the Boxing Business.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 27 Sept. 2018,

“Violence in the Media and Entertainment (Position Paper).” AAFP Home, 19 Mar. 2019,

“Why Do People Deny Violent Media Effects?” Psychology Today, Sussex Publishers,