Is Television Making You Stupid

In: English and Literature

Submitted By ag1723
Words 744
Pages 3
Television is a huge part of today’s society, and is a convenient way to get information out to users. It’s hard to say whether tv makes us smarter, but two essays that have very different views on this topic are “Watching TV Makes You Smarter” by Steven Johnson and “Thinking Outside The Idiot Box” by Dana Stevens’. Steve Johnson goes into detail about how modern television has the ability to allow viewers to grasp many abstract ideas at the same time. On the other hand, Dana Stevens believes the opposite. Even though watching too much TV can distract you from other tasks, tv can allow an individual to grasp multiple concepts at once, and watching certain television shows have the ability to increase intelligence.
In Steven Johnson’s article “Watching TV Makes You Smarter” he goes into detail about how television is not necessarily responsible for “dumbing us down” like many would believe. Johnson goes into detail about the sleeper curve and how society is growing as the years pass. He suggests that TV forces an individual to think, stimulates the brain and forces our mind to focus on the plot. He suggests that TV shows we watch today help us analyze certain situations and increase our intellectual capabilities leading to an increase of intelligence. Some believe that Reality TV can help engage our mind and even teach us street smarts. Johnson believes that the true test is determining if the TV shows sedates our mind or engages it. To “determine what really is cognitive junk food and what is generally nourishing”(Johnson).
Dana Stevens Disagrees with Johnson's views. In her article “Thinking Outside The Idiot Box” she states “If watching TV really makes you smarter, as Steven Johnson argued in an article in yesterday's New York Times Magazine then I guess I need to watch a lot more of it, because try as I might, I could make no sense of Johnson's piece. As far…...

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