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Drench Hypothesis

  • By: C. Mo Bahk
  • In: Encyclopedia of Media Violence
  • Edited by: Matthew S. Eastin
  • Subject:Mass Communication, Aggression & Violence, Violence & Society

Drench hypothesis focuses on differential effects of fictional or dramatic media messages on viewers. Media researchers often assume that media messages generate cumulative drip-drip-drip effects on the audience. Bradley S. Greenberg (1988), however, noted that some characters or presentations of fictional media, such as narrative film and television drama or situation comedy, can have drench (i.e., impressive) effects on some viewers. He suggested that not all portrayals have the same impact and that certain characters, rather than the collected mass of role characters, can have significant, lasting impacts. Diana Reep and Faye Dambrot (1989) empirically demonstrated that some fictional characters or presentations, rather than the accumulated images of numerous other characters and presentations, can have intense effects on viewers. Drench hypothesis assumes that effects of ...

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