The study on modern social and domestic violence is turning out to be a complex and challenging undertaking. Despite relying on the merging complicated tools and technology, violence in modern society is used as a media spectacle. This paper brings out the way violence can be used as a media spectacle as well as the reason behind the same. According to the available research findings, it is clear and appropriate to state that modern violence and culture industries has multiplied media spectacle in all aspects including sites, films, and novel space. Media spectacle is itself becoming the key organizing principle in modern economy, politics, and in other critical asocial activities (Sturken & Cartwright, 2007, p. 76). The internet-based economy has also modified and developed hit-tech spectacle useful as a mean of reproduction, promotion, in selling and in circulation of commodities. Although modern technology is with time becoming a complicated technology among a good number of modern consumers, contemporary business entrepreneurs are relying on their services to improve their productivity and effectiveness.

In addition to having a critical role in shaping and defining modern domestic and social violence, media has also be of the essence in influencing social and political life in modern integrate society. Political and social conflicts are with time being played out on the screens of media culture that display spectacles such as political sex scandal, the explosive violence of every day’s activities, terrorist bombing, celebrity sex scandal as well as the sensational murder case that are apparent in modern modernized society (Pollock,  2006, p.51). Apart from offering expanding moments in modern experiences, media culture also presents additional materials for modeling thoughts, dreaming fantasy, and for constructing identity. Studies have further affirmed that popular traditional entertainment has its roots in media spectacles (Beardsell, 2000, p. 97).

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Theorist Jacques Lacan

As stated by a renowned theorist, Jacques Lacan, in his theory “gaze theory,” media has played a detrimental role in shaping violence in modern society. The gaze theory is also useful in describing the manner in which violence can be used as a media spectacle. The concept gaze is a technical term that was used in film theory in the late 1970s (Pollock, 2009, p. 27). So far, the concept has become a popular concept used by media theorist. The theory is used to define the influence of gazing on individual perceptions as well as the way people look at subjects and media presentations. The theory is also used in defining the manner in which audience views people that are presented in media. The concept gaze is also extended to the theory of feminist where it address the manner in which men look at women, the way in which women look at themselves, and other women as well as the effects that surrounds this observations. In the theory, male gaze is used in defining the manner in which male view their fellow women (Zehner, 2012, P. 67). On the other hand, the female gaze describes the way in which females view their fellow men in society.

Other social activities such as dominant public life, religion war, and sports were fertile and useful field for propagation of spectacles for many centuries. With the emergence of new information and multimedia technologies, techno spectacle has been shaping the trajectories and contours of modern society and culture. In developed and advanced capitalist nations such as United Kingdom and the United States f America, media spectacles has turned out to be a defining feature not only for globalization but also for defining modern social conflict and violence (Fourie, 2008, p. 51).

As observed in “The cinema of David Cronenberg” culture has played critical role in increasing criminal activities and violence in modern society. In reporting domestic violence, journalists refer to some of the cultural concepts in justifying domestic violence. As observed in “The cinema of David Cronenberg” it is impossible and challenging to discuss any film without mentioning cultural beliefs and practices. All films revolve around a specific culture. In addition, in coming up with a realistic and attractive piece of episode, a good number of films relate modern occurrences with the existing social structure and practices. The manner in which the film “The cinema of David Cronenberg” is plotted is an indication on how media plays a critical role in advancing violence in modern society. “The cinema of David Cronenberg” uses violence in modern society to produce a productive and attractive film plotting with limited consideration of its impacts to the general society.

Based on the concept presented in the gaze theory, it is clear that some of the concepts that are presented in modern media can have harmful impacts on the way men view their fellow women. In cases of domestic violence, media present men as the heads of the family institutions (Kermit, 2008, p. 27). Media also justify the act of male being violent to women thus advancing family violence in the society. Women presume themselves as valueless people in the society who are supposed to be dominated and controlled by their male counterparts. These perceptions also undermine women effort of searching for their rights in the society (Lacan, & Seminar, 2008, p. 17). Repeating some of the outdated perception on the relationship between male and female in the society also increase domestic violence in modern society. Therefore, in order to minimise cases of domestic violence in modern society, the media should present both men and women as equal players in the society.

Modern scholars have described the manner in which modern violence is used as a media spectacle by describing the way media reports domestic violence in various parts of the world. Based on the recent surveys, it is clear that there is endless concern in the manner in which media in the world present domestic violence. Although to some extent cultural beliefs and social practices has a role in defining the manners in which media present this form of violence, there are evidence to confirm that violence is used as a media spectacle. Apart from presenting the roots cause of the problem, modern media are criticised by social and psychological thinkers for reproducing some of the discouraging images. In most cases, some of the images that are presented in the media enlist and motivate domestic violence especially in less developed and in developing countries.

The use of violence as a media spectacle is also explained through psychoanalysis theory by Mulvey (1975). She makes the application of psychoanalysis theory, which is greatly applied in this case to show how violence can be used as a media spectacle. In this case, the psychoanalysis theory is used to show the way film fascination is reinforced mainly by patterns of fascination that already pre-exist at work (Mulvey, 1975). This happens specifically within an individual subject, as well as the social formations, which have moulded the individual. This aspect is said to act as the starting point in terms of the way films reflect, reveal, and play on the straight. It involves some socially established interpretations of sexual differences that control images, spectacles, as well as erotic modes of looking. The psychoanalytic theory is critically important as a weapon, a political weapon that demonstrates how the unconscious way of patriarchal society is structured (Mulvey, 1975).

The Django Unchained

The play The Django Unchained can also be used to describe the manner in which violence can be used as a media spectacle. The Django Unchained has also been effective in describing the manner in which violence can be used as a media spectacle. The film was released in December 25, 2012. Being one of the most popular movies in the United States of America the film was directed and written by Quentin Trantino. In its plotting, the film presents a story of a freed slave (Foxx) who went back to United States of American with a bounty hunter in order to rescue his lovely wife from a rough and cruel plantation owner. In its entirety, the film is composed of endless cases of violence and killings (Edwards, 2012, P. 31). The main theme in the film is violence and gender inequality in the society. Initially, the main actor in the story Django was a slave who worked in one farm in America. The character was forced to separate with his wife to serve as slave in one popular plantation farm. Although his wife was weak to perform complicated job in the farm, she was also subjected to hard labour. Django and his wife were forced to work free in on plantation farm due to their racial orientation. In the plantation presented in the firm it was clear that white Americans owners of the means of production used people from other races as slave to provide free labour in their farms. In the attempt of rescuing his wife from the hand of brutal and violence plantation owner, Django was subjected to endless torture and ridicule. A good number of people who encountered him while in the process of rescuing his wife criticised Django for engaging in such unfruitful activities. Instead, they advised him to abandon her wife and look for another wife in the society.

Some of the images that are displayed in the media also serve as critical and useful reminder of pervasiveness of men’s violence against women in modern society. As a result, the media incite the public against women who are involved in domestic violence without considering the cause and the impacts of the incidence to the affected individuals and to the entire society. Some of the reported domestic violence cases force the society to blame the victim in cases of family violence. In other cases, instead of taking the required action to save the victim from future domestic violence, media coverage helps community members to turn a blind eye on such private matters. Based on the available statistical information, it is clear that media has played a regrettable role in accelerating domestic violence in modern society.

Instead of searching for reliable intervention measures, the manner in which media present violence case advances psychological and mental problem on the victim (Lorimer, & Scannell, 1994, p.17). In addition, the modern sensationalist coverage can have a detrimental impact both on community development as well as on mental health o the affected individual. In the situation where news media acts voyeuristically by producing abusive images, they serve to normalise such violence thus undermining the significant of bringing unity and peace in the society. The act of normalising violence in modern society has not only increased cases of domestic violence in the society, but has also demonstrated the irresponsibility of modern media (Vipond, 2000, p.65). To counter the ever-increasing violence cases in modern society, journalists and other media personnel should be responsible in their reporting. Abiding by the code of ethics that define and guide media undertaking is also of critical importance especially in modern integrate and multicultural society. Consequently, it is appropriate to state that violence is used as a media spectacle in modern society.

The play The Django Unchained further reviewed that compared to their fellow male slaves, women slave were sold at a cheaper prices. In other situations plantation owners received women slaves free (Pack, 2012, p.93). Despite having discouraging and immoral theme, the film Django Unchained gained huge popularity especially in United States of America media. Young people and most specifically college students supported the content of the movie without considering its outcome both on women and to other vulnerable members of the society. To demonstrate its popularity among the United States media, the film was nominated among five influential academy awards including the popular Best Picture Awards. The writer of the film, Christoph Waltz also received numerous rewards both from media institutions and from film producers. Among some of the awards that the director of the film attained included the BAFTA award, the Golden Globe Award and the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

With reference to recent studies, it is also factual to state that the manner in which violence is viewed can result to desensitisation. Desensitisation can result to reduced tendency of searching for the most effective and sustainable intervention measures to avert the problem. The manner in which the media report domestic and social violence determines the actions that will be taken on the suspects. Media reporting can also help in the determination of the most effective and reliable legislation to minimise such cases in future. In addition, the inhumane way that the media use to report serious violence cases has also reduced the sense of sympathy on the victim. As opposed to offering the required support on the affected victims, members of the society blames the victims thus affecting their mental and psychological development and growth.

Shocking Entertainment

In addition, the film “Shocking Entertainment” is described by many professionals as one of the most violent movies of the late 1970’s. The film attempts to confirm the perception that contemporary society is characterized by endless conflict and violence. Despite portraying the manner in which domestic violence in abundant in modern society, the film has also exaggerated violence in modern society. Although the film was one of the most violence movies in the late 1970’s, the art remains to be one of the most popular arts in modern society. Studies have however confirmed that the film has not only increased cases of violence in modern society but has also advanced mistrust among young generation. This film is, therefore, an indication of the manner in which violence be used as a media spectacle.

Violence in films is also held up by Reads (2000) who provides adequate support for the use of violence as a media spectacle. In this case, the use of a full-length study of the film, which is on rape revenge, is applied with suggestions about violence and media. Reads suggests that cycle on the rape revenge could be attributed to one of the fundamental ways in the film industry of Hollywood has tried to make sense of feminism as well as the changing shape of the heterosexual femininity experienced during the period of the post-1970 (Read, 2000). Reads in this case argues that revenging on rape is fur much better understood not specifically as a genre, but rather in terms of a narrative structure. Violence then emerges in the course of this revenge.

Eastern Promises

The impact of media on domestic violence is further reviewed in the film Eastern Promises. The film, Eastern Promises is also another production that has confirmed the allegations that violence is used as a media spectacle. Eastern Promises was realised in 2007 in Britain. The film was directed and produced by David Cronenberg. The film describes a story of the interaction between the Russian mafia in London and the British midwife. Although the film is an indication of the manner in which violence is the main means of searching for lasting solution in the society, the production is one of the most popular movies not only in Britain but also in other parts of the world including the United States of America. Despite presenting moral decay and male dominancy in modern society, the films was listed among the topmost viewed films in 2007. Britain media personally also used most of their time talking about the content of the film as well as the competent of its director. In addition, the film won several awards including audience Prize in Toronto International Film Festival. The writer of the film also owns the actor of the year award in United Kingdom.

According to the media code of ethics, journalists and other professionals in media department should adopt responsible reporting to avoid unintended and regrettable outcome on their reporting. It is also the role of the media professionals to assist in the elimination of discriminatory traditional practices and stereotypes. Issues such as domestic violence are outdated means of solving family problems in modern family institutions. In this kind of reporting, media house should adopt a sensitive and informative ways of presenting the case to the public. Media professionals also have an undertaking of shaping the manner in which members of the society understand male violence against women. Although this violence was effective in traditional social settings, the act is irrelevant in modern society. Modern society emphasises the important of dialogue in solving their family problems and disputes.

In the film, Eastern Promises it was also clear that the author twisted the plot in order to hide its intended meaning. With an aim of presenting the theme of the film, the actor has succeeded in twisting the plot of the film (Maria,   2008, p.51). The film is popular for supporting and discussing in details the most effective means of engaging in sex trafficking. A good number of female actors in the film were in one way or another being victims of sex trafficking. In this case, the film indicates that women do not have the control over their sexuality. As a result, trafficking women for sex was a booming business in the country. Although there are existing regulations and law that prohibit human trafficking, the film has confirmed that this business is one of the most effective investments in modern society. Although the film has explored various methods that can be used in sex trafficking, the film has failed to offers a lasting solution to counter the vice. Instead, going by the tone of the film, it is clear that the director of the film intended at supporting sex trafficking.

The film is also characterized by intensive violence and disagreement among community members. As presented in the film, violence is the only mean of solving social and political issues. The society that is presented by the film is controlled and managed by Russian career criminals. This criminal uses the violence act to earn their living in the society. Instead of relying on the existing security agencies in the country, society members and most specifically the rich individual uses these criminals for their protection purposes and as a mean of attaining wealth. Therefore, irrespective of the sensitivity of sex trafficking in and criminal activity the society, the film seems to be insensitive in its presentation. Instead of educating the young generation on the importance of using the correct means to earn a living, the films emphasises on the important of engaging in violence to live a satisfying and comfortable. Media and most specifically entertainment department can therefore be blamed for ensuring that violence is used as a media spectacle (Franich, 2012, p.9).

In popularising the film in America, the media confirmed the traditional allegations and perception that women are lower status human beings in the society. The film has also justified the importance of conflict in searching for a solution on emerging issues. This is owing to the fact that the film is characterised by endless conflict and tension among the owners of the mean of production and the slave. At the end of the film, many people had lost their lives in the hand of the owners of the means of production (Eisenberg, 2011, P.87).

Theorist Guy Debord  

The theorist Guy Debord also played a critical role in describing the manner in which violence can be used as a media spectacle. In his Situationist theory, Guy Debord   has described the role of media spectacle in increasing violence in modern society. The theory states that mass media have superficial manifestation that affects activities and operations in modern society. Media spectacle is also known in forming a society of the spectacle where media is the main pillar for all decisions and actions in the society (Sturken & Cartwright, 2007, P. 31). Through this theory, it is also clear that instead of being influenced by the society, media has a critical role in influencing the actions and activities of the society. The introduction of modern public relations and advertising has also proved useful in influencing the society social and economic development trend. By considering the content present in Situationist theory, media has a critical role in bring peace and violence in the society.

Responsible reporting with maximum consideration of the existing code of ethics could promote violence in society. In contrary, irresponsible reporting is reliable for bringing discord and conflict in society (Armstrong, &de Zegher, 2006, p. 91). Despite reducing criminal activities in the society, responsible reporting among modern media can help in dealing with women discrimination and violence.

The reputation of perception and myths on men violence has also been detrimental in shaping the public attitude and perception towards the perpetrators of the violence and the victims. The reputation of social construction norms that describes the power of men in the society and in family institutions has also affected the rate of policymaking process and conviction rate. In insensitive means used by media in reporting family conflicts has so far undermined the important of having a reliable policy of countering the vice in the society. Furthermore, media reporting also reduces the number of witnesses that are interested in testifying in the court of law on domestic violence incidences.


In the light of the above analysis, it is clear and accurate to conclude that violence can be used as media spectacle. The manner in which media present violence situation and most specifically domestic violence can largely influence people perception on conflict. In addition to assisting in dealing with high standards crimes, responsible media reporting can also be of critical importance in dealing with domestic violence. Irresponsible media reporting can also accelerated domestic violence and women discrimination in the society. In an attempt of dealing with modern crises in the society, media professionals need to understand the importance of responsible reporting while reporting emerging social crimes in society.


Armstrong, C. &de Zegher, C., 2006. Women Artists at the Millennium, New York, NY:   MIT Press.

Beardsell, P., 2000. Europe and Latin America: Returning the Gaze, Manchester, UK:       Manchester University Press.

Child, B., 2011. Tarantino’s Django Unchained script: The word is out, New York, NY:   The Guardian.

Edwards, G., 2012. Quentin Tarantino: my inspiration for Django Unchained, New York,            NY: The Guardian.

Eisenberg, E., 2011. Michael K. Williams Can’t Do Django Unchained, Has a Role in Snitch with the Rock, New York, NY: Cinema Blend.

Fourie, P., 2008. Media Studies: Media History, Media and Society, London:  Juta and       Company.

Franich, D., 2012. Django Unchained’ Comic-Con panel: Tarantino talks links to other movies, Don Johnson talks Foghorn Leghorn, London:  Blackwell.

Hill, A. 1997. Shocking Entertainment: Viewer Response to Movie Violence, Luton:        University of Luton Press.

Kermit S, 2008. Seeing and Beyond: A Festschrift on Eighteenth to Twenty-First Century   Art in Honor of Kermit, New York, NY: Peter Lang Verlag.

Lacan, J., & Seminar X, 2008. The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis,            London: W.W. Norton and Co.

Lorimer, R & Scannell, P. 1994. Mass communications: a comparative introduction,          Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Maria K., 2008. Violent mobsters, Alzheimer’s and genocide: It’s Canadian cinema, New   York, NY: National Post.

Mulvey, L. 1975. Visual pleasure, and narrative cinema. Screen, 16(3), p. 6-18.

Pack, H., 2012. In honour of “Django Unchained, a look at a dozen spaghetti Westerns worth your time, New York, NY: Dallas Morning News.

Pollock, G., 2006. Psychoanalysis and the Image London:  Blackwell.

Pollock, G., 2009. Modernity and the Spaces of Femininity, London:  Rutledge.

Sturken, M., & Cartwright L., 2007. Practices of Looking: an introduction to visual culture,            Oxford: Oxford University Press, Inc.

Read, J., 2000. The new avengers: feminism, femininity, and the rape-revenge cycle.            Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Vipond, M., 2000. The mass media in Canada, Toronto:  James Lorimer & Company.

Williams, L.1989. Hard Core: Power, Pleasure, and the Frenzy of the Visible.

Zehner, O., 2012. Green Illusions, Lincoln. NE: University of Nebraska Press.

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