Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2012

Publication Source

Crime, Media, Culture

Volume

8

Issue

3

Inclusive pages

261-278

Publisher

SAGE

Peer Reviewed

yes

Abstract

Abstract

This article offers a critical appraisal of the widespread argument that violent media content is to blame for deadly school violence. The departing premise of this study is that, because of its reliance on sophisticated technologies, popular culture productions represent manufactured risks. The implications of this approach are three: the ‘impact’ of popular culture will depend on the social risk positions students occupy within the social mapping of the school; there will be risks associated to the observational shortcomings of popular culture as a self-referent system; and the risks implied in controlling deviance in schools, including policies destined to cope with popular culture’s presumed adverse effect on students’ behaviors, must be explored. The risk approach allows us to understand school shooting events as the end result of a series of interrelated social, cultural, and political processes. The point at which these factors intersect tends to produce the conditions under which school shooters may emerge.

Keywords

manufactured risks, popular culture, school shootings, teen marginality

Disciplines

Sociology

Included in

Sociology Commons

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