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Wishful Identification

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The Jungle Book Typography - I wanna be like you from Julie Howells on Vimeo.

We all want to be someone great and at times that wish can be so powerful we end up becoming more and more immersed in the idea of being like that someone who has the things we don't have.

Wishful identification is the psychological process through which an individual desires or attempts to be like another person or character(Pyspost).

According to the article "Wishful identification with violent video game character leads to aggressive behaviors" researchers wanted to know if playing violent video games were more likely to increase aggression in adolescent boys who identify with violent characters than in adolescent boys that do not.

Basically the goal was to expose the boys to certain kinds of video games. Violent and non-violent. Afterwards they would tell the participants that they and there partner would be playing a button pressing game. Whoever lost would receive a blast of noise through their headphones. The boys who won were given the choice of deciding the loudness of the noise and were told a level of 10 would cause permanent damage. After the reaction game the participants were assessed on their level of wishful identification. "Those who strongly identified with violent video game characters exceeded level 8 noise, even though they were told that noise levels 8-10 could possibly damage their 'partners' ears." This blast of noise was delivered on the very first trial, before the boys had themselves been 'blasted' with noise, suggesting that it was unprovoked aggression(Psypost).

This reminds me of my childhood hero and how I wanted to be more like him.

One of my earliest memories is of me watching the t.v. show "Giga-man." It was a show about a delinquent who was rough on the outside and even rougher fist from all the fights he had been in. He dreamed of becoming the #1 boss of the area. People loved him and wished to be like him. I wanted to be just like him strong, brutal yet kind to his friends and loved by those he protected. As I started school I knew in order to be like Giga-man I needed to become the strongest and the easiest way was to defeat the current boss of the school. During episode 1 "Dawn of Giga-man," Giga-man on the first day of school burst into Don Chu's classroom.

["Are you the current boss?" Giga-man asked

"Yay, what of it!" Don Chu exclaimed
Giga-man's fists erupted and smashed Don Chu's face in.

"I'm the new boss of this place. Any objections!!" he yelled.

That day I found out who the boss of the school was. Asked him if he was in charge and wham! Right in his fat nose. This kid was probably twice my size. Everyone in the class of in an uproar.

"I'm the new boss of this place. Any objections!!" I proclaimed.]

Haha of course that's not how it plays out in the real world. I got into a lot of trouble but I was one step closer to being Giga-man.

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