Do modern video games impact the cultural perceptions and acceptance of racial stereotypes? a qualitative assessment of video game usage.
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Chapman Gillentine, Lacey.
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Historically, popular culture has been known to serve as a tool to transmit values, norms, and stereotypes from generation to generation. The technology trend that is indicative of the “information age” has created numerous methods to communicate popular culture through television, movies, the Internet, and video games. Since millions of Americans are playing video games today, social scientists, political entities, and advocate groups like Children Now have voiced concerns regarding the stereotypical characters used in video games. Top selling titles such as Grand Theft Auto are composed of violence, pornography, foul language, and many racial overtones associated with how characters dress, speak, and interact. Games like Grand Theft Auto have generated a growing number of content analyses to evaluate the exact nature and number of stereotypes present in modern day video games. This research study went beyond the content and directly addressed the concerns of how people perceive and accept stereotypes portrayed in video games. In order to evaluate perceptions, a theoretical framework based on Social Learning Theory was used to conduct a qualitative assessment to determine how a person’s level of video game usage, stereotype awareness, stereotype perception and impact, and personal experiences with stereotypes may influence their social learning process.