Analysis of the Cultivation Theory
Elements of the cultivation theory
One of the primary considerations in the theory is its generality or the extent to which it can be applied to relevant cases in the universe. The theory explains that television is the most influential media in shaping the culture of the society. The social relations and the way people think is mostly influenced by what they watch. Television reaches most people across the world thus its influence on behavior is widely experienced, making it have a high level of generality. The components or the main ideas in the theory include the position that the influence of televisions on individuals is a process that takes time. Television brings together diverse communities and standardizes their cultures. The more the time that one spends on television the more their likelihood to believe in the social realities that the media portrays. The goal of the cultivation theory is to show the effects that the television has on its viewers in terms of their perceptions of the world around them.
Judgment of the Theory
The theory relates to the impacts of television viewing on the viewers suggesting that the media has long-term effects on the beliefs and attitudes of the viewers. The theory covers a broad scope ranging from the effect of television exposure on gender issues, racial stereotypes, violence, political opinions, health beliefs, and science. There is logical consistency in the theory because it uses simple concepts and terms to explain the effect of televisions in shaping the society, making it easy to understand. The cultivation occurs through mainstreaming or resonance as described in the theory. The development of the theory was inspired by the many occurrences of crime in the society, and it sought to determine whether television programs that show violence had any link to the statistics. This indicates the parsimony in the theory.
The utility of the theory is evident in the way it explains the impacts of exposure to television over time. The world created by television through its different programs is different from the real world, but viewers may not realize this. The accuracy of the theory stems from the fact that it is based on statistics from the examination of the media influence. This proves the testability of the theory. The Heurism in the theory is evident in the way it is based on current research thus could be misleading because the trend could have changed especially with the evolution of technology over the years. The theory has passed the test of time even with the many changes that have occurred over time due to the introduction of new social media platforms. This makes the theory of cultivation a bit irrelevant considering that it is based on research that was carried out more than three decades ago.
The theory has a great significance in communication research since it explains the effects of media on the society. The research aims at establishing the negative and positive impacts of any form of media so as to identify the areas that need improvement. Being one of the most accessible media of communication, the results that the theory came up with were, therefore, applicable o the general society. The theory has its strong side and the weaknesses that limit its application. It combines the micro-level and macro-level theories making it more comprehensive. Through the theory, one is able to understand the unique role of television. It explains the basis for social change and it applies to a broad range of effects of television on the society. However, the methodology used in developing the theory is questionable. Besides, it only focuses on heavy television viewers and does not give any account of those who do not watch the television more often. It also assumes uniformity of television content.