Previous research has found a link between exposure to violent videogames and aggression. The current study investigated whether the endorsement of traditional masculinity ideology moderates this relationship in college men. The sample, 168 men, filled out a demographic questionnaire, the Male Role Norms Inventory-Revised, an adaptation of the Exposure to Violent Videogames Measure, and the Aggression Questionnaire. Exposure to violent videogames was, as expected, correlated with aggression. Endorsement of traditional masculinity ideology was also correlated with aggression. The endorsement of traditional masculinity ideology was found to moderate the relationship between exposure to violent videogames and aggression. High endorsement increased the positive linear relationship between exposure and aggression, whereas low endorsement removed this relationship.
Actually the study was so simple that the abstract is all you need to know about it. My only complaint is the Exposure to Violent videogames measure as that questionnaire asked participants how often they play from a list of 32 videogames, which was adapted from a prior study used in Germany. They should’ve went for the Olson-Ferguson videogame measure: name your favorite (5 or 20) videogames of the past 6 months and code these videogames according to the ESRB rating system. The caveat is that the study is a survey and everything is correlational, but the findings support some of the internet’s observations about manliness’s aggressiveness and violent videogames.
So, what’s next? Maybe we should stop catering to juvenile masculinity and grow up by embracing diversity.
Thomas, K., & Levant, R. (2012). Does the endorsement of traditional masculinity ideology moderate the relationship between exposure to violent video games and aggression? The Journal of Men’s Studies , 20 (1), 47-56. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3149/jms.2001.47