Maybe I shouldn't put this out there since it's an incomplete theory, and I don't know if it's even testable, but... there does seem to be a loss of resilience in society right? You know mass shootings, depending on the definition being on the rise, as memorable as they are it feels that way. An NCAA basketball coach mentioning how his players are more sensitive now, not like the old days when he played and he has to do like a 5:1 ratio of positive comments to negative ones because of that. And I don't want to criticize soldiers one bit because they're braver than I am, but I think back to a picture I saw of a civil war battle, where the families were watching the battle from like bleachers or something. I think they coped with death better back then too (Although this is probably due to the fact that the average life expectancy was <40 and with high infant mortality that would desensitize as well.) So the theory part, TV's effect, especially during youth. What if there's a natural linearity to life, and then a self confidence that develops by forming your own opinions based on a more natural context (spatial, time, actors you're familiar with and responses by those actors you can reasonably predict at certain stages). With TV you have a lot of imposition of will. Mainly due to only being able to focus on like 1 thing at a time. So combine this with the layers of meaning present in film at all levels and you have ideologies imposed on the viewer for one thing. Also the unnatural fragmentation in tv - in a 30s commercial you might have 15-20 jump cuts with an avg of 2 seconds per clip. A lot will get by an adult, let alone a kid or teen. At an avg of 3hrs viewing per day or whatever it is now, it is pure innundation of information, fragmentary and non-sequential. 8 year olds watching the same programs as their 30yr old folks and presented in an unnatural way in time and space and internalized unnaturally. Life milestones, responses to bullying, expansion from 1st person perspective to second and third, group think and roles in groups - all ideas imposed on youth thousands of times often with pieces missing in the jump cut, the clear path from point A to point B. Also imitation of tv and film actors ways of communicating. Like the final word being so important when really a lot of people are (or should be), learning all the time. There is just a massive cumulative amount of exposure to tv for our limited attention brains. And the effect? I think the effect of this is a big component of the loss of resilience. Short version: TV imposition of will by selective attention, layers of meaning and pure volume of information. Theory: Self-confidence and with it resilience form better by forming one's own opinions in life in a more linear natural development over time, especially the pre-tv era.