Remotely Controlled by Aric Sigman is a well-researched and interesting, not dull, account of the damage television does on many fronts, as well as how families can cut out or cut back on television. It is worth having in every library and for parents, especially, to read and digest.
Excerpts from Remotely Controlled
Television is a fact of life for most of us, like it or not, like cell phones or emails, a way of life, and an ubiquitous part of our day-to-day existence that we often take for granted. How did we ever live without it? Children are shocked to learn there was a time when there was no television. What did people do with themselves?
Dr. Aric Sigman, an American psychologist
presents a convincing case against the television lifestyle of four hours per day that the average American spends vegging in front of the television. Does television as a way of life contribute to obesity? Poor health? Depression
? ADHD in children
? ADHD in adults? According to Sigman, who provides documentation in the form of well-researched clinical studies, the answer is yes. Television does all that and more. Sigman, you can clearly see in this book, despises the television lifestyle.
Not only is it a well-known source of overt violence, that the masses indulge in, but it is also a source of non-overt tension, stress, and source of negative emotion that inadvertently and subtly contributes to depression, as well as to violence as an outlet for these negative emotions, beyond the copy-cat effect of violent acts that television is often blamed for.
Sigman presents a pretty well documented case with, in general, clinical studies published in conservative professional publications such as the New England Journal of Medicine and Clinical Nursing Research, to give some idea of the type of studies Sigman draws from in his research.
Some of his claims and conclusions, might be a stretch to actually prove, but all in all, the book does provide both insight into the affect that watching television for what amounts to 12 years of our life, has on our mind, psyche, personality and world view.
The news, he states is a carefully manipulated presentation of a limited type of facts, which colour our view of the world to adopt a narrow minded point of view that is not a true reflection of the reality.
Sigman recommends green time as a mental health anecdote to television overload, for both adults and children, demonstrating the positive effects time with nature and exercise can accomplish for our mind and psyche.
The book is worth reading and should be motivating for both parents and individuals to turn off the TV, or at least keeps its use curtailed in the home. The book was a bit angry at times, sometimes a little off-color in its vocabulary in the television and sex section especially, needlessly so. But all in all it was interesting reading that was more or less riveting.
Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business
, by Neil Postman, Andrew Postman
...thought-provoking attack on television and what it is doing to us. Postman's theme is the decline of the printed word and the ascendancy of the "tube" with its tendency to present everything, murder, mayhem, politics, weather as entertainment. The ultimate effect, as Postman sees it, is the shriveling of public discourse as TV degrades our conception of what constitutes news, political debate, art, even religious thought.
Postman begins the book with a history of America's historical "love affair" with the printed word, from colonial pamphlets through the publication of the Lincoln-Douglas debates. Arriving in modern times, the authors demonstrate that television subverts literate culture, in favor of instant gratification. TV commercials are noted as a form of "instant therapy," which assumes that human problems are instantly remedied by purchasing a product. Amusing Ourselves to Death provides an honest look at what television really is and how our intelligence is undermined.
Living Without the Screen: Causes and Consequences of Life without Television
, by Marina Kromar
Living Without the Screen provides an in-depth study of those American families and individuals who opt not to watch television, exploring the reasons behind their choices, discussing their beliefs about television, and examining the current role of television in the American family. This volume provides a current, distinctive, and important look at how personal choices on media use are made, and how these choices reflect more broadly on media’s place in today’s society.
A compelling exploration of the motivations and rationales for those who choose to live without television, this book is a must-read for scholars and researchers working in children and media, media literacy, sociology, family studies and related areas. It will also be of interest to anyone with questions about media usage and the choices families make regarding the role of media in their lives.
Pages Related to Life Without Television
Book Excerpts and Synopsis
of Remotely Controlled: How Television is Damaging Our Lives - and What We Can Do About It. 2007. Aric Sigman, Ph.D.
Book Synopsis - Living Without the Screen
: Causes and Consequences of Life without Television
Ideas to Help Children
Develop Skill and Interest in Art
Life Without Television
Can Have Psychological Benefits
Spanish translation of Overcoming ADHD Without Medication: Superar el Trastorno por Déficit de Atención con Hiperactividad (TDAH) Sin Medicación: Guía para Padres y Educadores
Related off-site references:
Aric Sigman: The 'Just Say No' dad
(off-site). The psychologist Aric Sigman believes today's indulgent parents are creating a generation of little emperors – and that they must regain control The Guardian