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The most important concern in the debate about violent film has been whether or not it promotes aggressive behavior among viewers most especially the young ones (Evra 1990). Researchers have also shown that heavy exposure to screen violence can cause problems in other domains of social behavior. For example, it can make people become both fearful of the world around them and accepting violence in the real life as displayed by others (Evra 1990). Violence is one of the global concerns today in all segments of the world. Antisocial behavior in human beings is accepted to be associated to a number of physiological, psychological, domestic and cultural aspects.

The learning environments which a child is exposed to are also assumed to contribute to the increase of aggressive behaviors and attitudes as well as his inclinations to customs, values and norms of the society (Berkowitz, 2001).

The media, as one of the specific learning condition is believed to be a potential contributor to the growth of antisocial attitudes and behavior in children and teenagers (Ibid). While social scientists work on determining the major causation of violence, such as social environments, cultural factors, family instruction, and group membership parents, teachers, politicians and school administrators continue to blame the media for increased cultural alienation and attitudinal change among adolescents (Fraser and Staub, 1996).

Considerations about the effects of films can be traced back to the 1920s. At that time, the earliest coordinated social scientific research or investigation into the impact of these effects began in the Western countries. It was intended at studying the harmful impacts of films on societies. The development of this medium as a common mass entertainment and information source during the 1950s encountered similar concerns about potential harms, especially in connection with young audiences (Gunter, 1994). Nowadays, many concerns have been raised about the kinds of values and attitudes that may be inculcated by exposure to certain kinds of media contents, especially enculturation and violence in movies (Kubey and Larson, 2005).

Nigerian youths are increasingly adopting wholesale cultural values that are alien and not compatible with the Nigerian way of life [1]. The Nigerian youth may not be totally responsible for lack of appreciation of our culture. Famous among vehicles of cultural imperialism are the mass media. Television, with its visual, audio and motion capacities ranks among the most influential medium of communication in recent times. Television programs are transmitted at the local level to the local audience, national level to the national audience who cut across different ethnic groups and religion, and global level to the international community or audience who are situated within different countries of different continents. Global television, which includes satellite transmission of programs from one country to many other countries, is the most vibrant instrument of cultural imperialism.

For instance, school principals, mothers, and young people were surveyed for their perceptions of factors influencing home cultures among youth. The results showed that violent messages in rap music and violence in the movies are perceived as the factor among others, influencing the formative process of the teenagers (Kandakai, Price and Telljohann, 1999). Also and importantly, the question of cultural promotion in the developing world has been hampered by blind acceptance and practice of western cultures by the young ones. Findings however show that film as a medium of mass communication is one the major contributors.

The media as a secondary agent of socialization has to a very large extent influenced the lives of many cutting across different socio-cultural and economic status. Its role in the lives of people and especially young people cannot be overemphasized. This is supported by Iorza (2014) who said that “youths are the most vulnerable victims of cultural imperialism. Socialization and culture are two sides of the same coin and therefore, they remain inextricably linked”. William (1977), and Devadas and Ravi (2013) defined culture as an ongoing integral part of the existence of every society and is learned, taught transmitted from one generation to another using varying agents of socialization.

Suffice here to say that no society exists without a way of life exclusive to their existence, which inevitably affects their interactional process both internally and externally. The interactional process of members of a society culminates into a value system for them which imply their views of the world. Values of people could refer to perceptions on worthy or unworthy matter; liked or disliked attribute and among other elements of the world view. When a particular world view is held and defined by a cultural group over a period of time, it evolves into cultural value and grows to become a legacy. Thus, against the backdrop, Kluckhohn as cited in Daramola (2005) states that “culture is a social legacy that an individual acquires from his group, which comprises of values, customs, beliefs, language, religion, technology, emotional patterns, behavioural patterns and among many other socio-cultural symbols”.

The Nigerian government has made tremendous efforts towards the promotion of indigenization in all sectors of the economy including the promotion of indigenous television and radio program and production of indigenous consumer programs for her citizens. The aim of the Nigerian government towards her indigenization policy has been to encourage the Nigerian youths who are already caught in the dilemma of embracing the local cultures and holding firm unto adopted foreign cultures. The thrust of this paper is to explore the Nigerian youths‟ reaction to foreign television programs, the impact of such programs on their lifestyles, and the possibility of making the Nigerian local content more attractive to the Nigerian youth.


Nowadays, the teenagers in Nigeria and Africa as a whole watch western films with impunity or without caution. This shapes their thoughts, attitudes, associations, behaviors and general ways of life. The knowledge adopted from violent movies has negatively influenced the cultural values of many teenagers.

The problem of the study is that viewing violence oriented films on television seems to affect the behavior of youths in Nigeria. Films have a dramatic effect on the perception of viewers whether the person is conscious or unconscious of this fact for the process of any society. It is good to be peaceful, eschewing violence and settling issues with dialogue and non-violence means.

Repeated exposure to violence tends to create stereo type in people minds and soon they unconsciously start to re-enact the same scenes they see in films. This type of situation creates problems for the society and if not properly handled may become a big problem for the society to grapple with.

Some of the problems of teenagers’ exposure to violent films are inadequate policy to guard the youths towards violence TV programmes, there is an erosion of the cultural values, the imitation of Western cultures especially the American cultures, and the Nigerian youths are faced with brain wash. These problems necessitates the needs to carry out a study on effects of violent films on Nigerian cultural values.


The general objective of this study focuses on examining the effects of violent films on Nigerian cultural values. The specific objectives include the following:

1.     To ascertain the preference of violent films among teenagers in Agege Local government area of Lagos state.

2.     To find out the influence of violent films on the dressing pattern of teenagers in Agege Local government area of Lagos state.

3.     To examine if violent films affects the temperament of teenagers in Agege Local government area of Lagos state.

4.     To investigate the negative impact of violent films on teenagers in Agege Local government area of Lagos state.

5.     To assess if violent films affect the cultural values of teenagers in Agege Local government area of Lagos state.


The relevant questions related to this study include the following:

1.     What is the preference of violent films among teenagers in Agege Local government area of Lagos state?

2.     What is the influence of violent films on the dressing pattern of teenagers in Agege Local government area of Lagos state?



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