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Role of Global Media Use on Adolescent Development in South Africa
Unformatted Document Text:  Global Media Use in South Africa \ of achieving psychological autonomy. Also, there could be occasions in which casual exposures to media content lead to the creation or the reminder of individual needs. For instance, the repeated exposure to media portrayals of ideal body image has been found to be related to eating disorder among adolescent girls (McCabe & Ricciardelli, 2001). Another outcome of the epistemic doubt adolescents experience as they mature is that they may end up with multiple, often contradictory, self-concepts (Harter, 1990) as they explore personal identities through a series of analyses and evaluations (Erikson, 1968). They are seen as looking to become more independent from immediate influences— parents, mostly—who informed their early identities (Larson, 1995). Some studies point out that peer relationships become more influential during adolescence (Arnett, 1995; Nathanson 2001). Besides, adolescents might be more influenced by the media in shaping their self-concepts in seeking to be more independent. This is, of course, not to argue that whatever content from the media would have a direct effect on the adolescent viewers, but to point out that the influence would be greater when adolescents are exposed to the media contents that are salient to their life issues. Media use during adolescence are also characterized as being solitary (Christenson & DeBenedittis, 1986; Kubey & Larson, 1990; Arnett, 1995). An increase in the amount of solitary television viewing—even though the viewing in general has been found to be decreasing (Comstock, 1991)—and of listening to music, on the radio or with CD players, are some of the evidences of the shifting tendency. The increasing popularity of computer media—the Internet and home video games—among adolescents would qualify as examples as well. Also, as pointed out earlier, maturity was found to be related to the

Authors: Lee, Anselm.
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Global Media Use in South Africa
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of achieving psychological autonomy. Also, there could be occasions in which casual
exposures to media content lead to the creation or the reminder of individual needs. For
instance, the repeated exposure to media portrayals of ideal body image has been found to
be related to eating disorder among adolescent girls (McCabe & Ricciardelli, 2001).
Another outcome of the epistemic doubt adolescents experience as they mature is
that they may end up with multiple, often contradictory, self-concepts (Harter, 1990) as they
explore personal identities through a series of analyses and evaluations (Erikson, 1968).
They are seen as looking to become more independent from immediate influences—
parents, mostly—who informed their early identities (Larson, 1995). Some studies point out
that peer relationships become more influential during adolescence (Arnett, 1995;
Nathanson 2001). Besides, adolescents might be more influenced by the media in shaping
their self-concepts in seeking to be more independent. This is, of course, not to argue that
whatever content from the media would have a direct effect on the adolescent viewers, but
to point out that the influence would be greater when adolescents are exposed to the media
contents that are salient to their life issues.
Media use during adolescence are also characterized as being solitary (Christenson
& DeBenedittis, 1986; Kubey & Larson, 1990; Arnett, 1995). An increase in the amount of
solitary television viewing—even though the viewing in general has been found to be
decreasing (Comstock, 1991)—and of listening to music, on the radio or with CD players,
are some of the evidences of the shifting tendency. The increasing popularity of computer
media—the Internet and home video games—among adolescents would qualify as
examples as well. Also, as pointed out earlier, maturity was found to be related to the


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