The Influence Of Western Television Programmes On The Cultural Values Of Nigeria Youths

Project and Seminar Material for Mass Communication

The Influence Of Western Television Programmes On The Cultural Values Of Nigeria Youths (A Case Study Of Caritas Students, Enugu).


This study probes the impact which Tv has on the cultural values of the Nigeria youths. It specifically tackles the impact of western Tv programes on Nigeria University students. The research posits that the current trends in cultural behaviour of youths in Nigeria as observed among Caritas student Enugu is significantly associated with their perception of western culture and exposure to western Tv programmes.

The assumption that foreign media content has direct powerful effects is shared by optimistic modernization theory. Lerner (1962) Rogers (1964) Schramm (1964) and the later critical perspective of cultural and media imperialism. McPhail (1981), (1984) Gerbuer (1977). The research applies the theory of acculturation along with the culturation hypothesis. “Defluer and Dennis 1991, Garbner 1977, Morgan 1991” explains that acculturation of Nigeria youths take place as a result of exposure to western Tv which influence the perception of Tv reality and alters self-image.

From the review of related literature, the following hypotheses emerged for testing HI: More exposure to Tv will tend to identification of western television stars as models. H2: The improvement of Local Tv movies industries will increase Nigerian youths’ preference for local Tv product. Research hypotheses 1 and 2 received statistical support from the analysis of collected data using the survey research method Recommendations to check the cultural genocide for further research were preferred.

Table Of Contents

Preliminary Page(s)

  • Cover Page
  • Title Page
  • Approval Page
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of Contents
  • Abstract

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Research Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Significance of the Study
  • 1.5 Research Question
  • 1.6 Research Hypothesis
  • 1.7 Scope/Delimitation of the Study
  • 1.8 Assumption of the Study
  • 1.9 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.10 Conceptional and Operational Definition

Chapter Two

2.0 Literature Review

  • 2.1 Sources of Literature
  • 2.2 Review of Relevant Literature
  • 2.3 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.4 Summary of the Literature

Chapter Three

3.0 Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Area of the Study
  • 3.3 Population of the Study
  • 3.4 Research Sample and Sampling Technique
  • 3.5 Instrument used for Data Collection
  • 3.6 Validity of the Instrument
  • 3.7 Method of Collecting Data
  • 3.8 Method of Data Analysis

Chapter Four

4.0 Presentation and Analysis of Data

  • 4.1 Date Analysis and Presentation
  • 4.2 Hypotheses Testing
  • 4.3 Discussion of Findings

Chapter Five

5.0 Summary, Recommendation and Conclusion

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Recommendation
  • 5.3 Conclusion
  • 5.4 Suggestion for further Studies
  • References
  • Bibliography
  • Unpublished Lecture Notes
  • Journals
  • Appendix
  • Questionnaire

Chapter One


1.1 Background Of The Study

This study is on The Influence Of Western Television Programmes On The Cultural Values Of Nigerian Youths using Caritas University Students as a case study. The term culture has been defined differently by different people. The different definitions attached to culture are based on the differences in the orientation of the people.

According to Ekeh (1989), culture is construct used in an attempt to analyze and integrate events and ideas in broad spectrum of areas of society. Jekayinka (2002), states that from wider perspective, culture includes the total repertoire of human action which are socially transmitted from generation to generation. Obiora (2002), says the transformation of culture is gradual and not sudden.

He (2002), contends that culture is a continuous process of change. It changes exactly the same way as the human being change. It is dynamic, learned, acquired, transmitted or diffused through contact or means of communication flow from generation to another. The Nigerian culture is observed to be fading out as a result of the acceptance and adaptation of the modernist’s solution on to underdevelopment. One of such theories which relates to this subtle method of assault international communication is given by Lerner (1956).

In his concept of “empathy”, Lerner states that the inhabitants of third world nations must learn to empathize with the West for modern transformation of their societies to be possible. Schramm (1964), on the other hand, developed an interesting model in which he equates the level of social development of communication to various nations. Access to these modern mass media (Radio, Television, films, telephone, and newspapers) is linked to individual modernity.

Nigeria and other third world countries have reacted to these finding by inventing a substantial amount of their foreign exchange earnings to import radio and television transmitters and sets. The television programmes especially provides many powerful models for children and abundant opportunities for observational learning.

The television programmes include:

  1. Depiction of sex
  2. Violence
  3. Drug and Alcohol used

a. Vulgar Language – behaviours. Etc. that most parents do not want their children to imitate.

Studies have been found by early adolescence that the average Nigerian children have watched thousands of dramatized murders and countless other acts of violence on television ( For many years, psychologists have debated the question of whether watching violence on Tv have detrimental effects on children. A number of experiments both inside and outside the laboratory have found evidence that viewing Tv violence is relayed to increased aggression in children.

Nigerians as exemplified by trends in Enugu Metropolis where Western exports of television entertainment, information are shown in NTA Enugu, ESBS Television, Minaj Channel, Cartoon Network, ESPN –“Expanded Sports programmes Network” channel provided by various satellite transmission operators as DSTV, Multi – Choice, Music television, Euro – sports, etc. Have raised Nigerians eyebrows to such Western television programmes.

Thereby, making them to behave like them, associate with them and even speaks like them. Even our generation that is shown on NTA Enugu and the youth perspective on ESBS are presented by youth and replete with music video of Western origin dominated by rape stars as (Late) Tupac, Beyonce, Ashanti, 50- Cent, Sean Paul, Kelly Rowland, Celine Dion, etc. It is the researcher’s believe that western television especially American television exports have a strategic “weapon” aimed to over power the cultural values of Nigerian youths.

1.2 Statement Of The Research Problem

The influence of Western television programmes on the cultural values of Nigerian youths have been said to be a serious problem facing Nigerians. Some of these problems are:

  1. Inadequate policy to guard the youths towards Western Tv programmes.
  2. There is an erosion of the cultural values.
  3. The imitation of Western cultures especially the American cultures.
  4. The Nigerian youths are faced with brain wash.

Therefore, if the above problems are not been taking care off, it will lead to a total destruction of the Nigerians culture.

1.3 Objective Of The Study

The researcher’s objective is to conduct an in-depth research on the influence of Western television programmes on the cultural values of the Nigerian youths with an insight to determine its implication to the cultural values of Nigerian youths are:

  1. To show how the contents of Western television programme affects Nigerian University students.
  2. To examines its pervasive impact on the cultural values of Nigerian University student.
  3. To know how to isolate Western television programmes from Nigeria.

1.4 Significance Of The Study

  1. The research will help in possible dilution, domination and finally absorption of the African/Nigerian culture which until the present has been characterized with good neighbourliness, respect for elders, virtuousness, community orientation and collectivism.
  2. It will enable the government and policy makers to put adequate measures in place to check the movement of Western television programmes into Nigeria.
  3. It will help remove the idea of imitating Western cultures or ways of life from Nigeria.
  4. The conduct of this research will enable the government to know what role the media can play in the development of a country and therefore, harness the mass media especially Tv in the democratic process and development process in general.

1.5 Research Questions

The research questions are arranged questions meant to be asked by the researcher and receives a feedback (answer) from a respondent. For a researcher to achieve her aim, the following question should be used.

  • Do Nigerian youths expose themselves more to Tv than other media?
  • Do they prefer Western Tv programmes to locally produced ones and why if yes?
  • Do Nigerian youths identify more with locally or foreign Tv stars as models?
  • Will improvement of local Tv/movies industries improve Nigerian youths preference for local Tv product?

1.6 Research Hypotheses

  • Hi: More exposure to Tv lead to identification of Western Tv stars as models
    Ho: More exposure to Tv do not lead to identification of Western Tv stars as models.
  • Hii: The improvement of local Tv /movies industries will increase Nigerian youths preference for local Tv product.
    Ho: The improvement of local Tv/ movies industries will not increase Nigerian youths preference for local Tv product.

1.7 Scope / Delimitation Of The Study

The scope of this study is to find out how the Western Television Programmes affect the Cultural Values of Nigerian Youths using Caritas University as a case study.

The institution is been noted for a constant influence of Western television programs on their cultural values. Hence, the need for choosing the institution as a case study commenced.

In the cause of the research, oral interview were consulted on both staffs and students of the institution. But the research depends more on the questionnaire which were distributed to students and staffs and were completed and returned. The researcher also consulted some textbooks, Newspapers and journals which provided a lot of information pertaining to the study.

1.8 Assumptions Of The Study

The following were the assumption of this study:

  1. A greater number of Nigerian University Students watch Tv.
  2. Western Tv programmes have a greater appeal to Nigerian University Students than locally produced programmes.
  3. That the programmes contents of Western Tv project symbiotic forms of social reality.
  4. The Western Tv is having a greater acculturation on Nigerian University Students in particular and on Nigerian youths in general.
  5. That the improvement of local Tv/ movies industries will change Nigerian youths attitudes towards Western Tv programmes.

1.9 Limitation Of The Study

Though this research work is on the influence of Western television programmes on the cultural valves of Nigerian youths. It is limited to Caritas University Students Amorji-nike, Enugu, using five departments that were randomly selected from faculties and hundred and fifty questionnaires that were distributed to them.

This is because of time and resource, had it been that time and resource were available similar studies would have been done in other private University/ schools in the country so as to ensure a more embracing result.

1.10 Conceptional And Operational Definitions Of The Terms.

1. Youth:

It means young men and women.


It is defined as students in various Universities in Nigeria and who fall between the ages of 15 -30

2. Media:

The means of giving news and opinions to large number of people.


The media is operationalised as Tv. Broadcast used to generate or circulate information to the public.

3. Cultural Identify:

It is the self definition, self perception and self- image of a person as a member of a group exhibiting uniform culture that are consistent with the values of that group.


It is those commonly shares socio-political interpretation and meanings related to the beliefs, norms, values, attitudes and behaviours within Nigeria.

4. Cultural Dominance:

This refers to nations of neocolonialism that uses policy and practice that have effect to dominate the culture and affairs of less developed countries.


It means the conscious and unconscious domination by Western Tv media on the media system of Nigeria.

Chapter Five

Summary, Recommendation And Conclusion

5.1 Summary

This study contains an analysis of the broad areas presumed scientific research which have showed that exposure to television products of Western origin exercises a powerful influence on the cultural values of viewers from other countries.

In this study, concentration was on Western television as the independent variables and the cultural identity of Nigerian University students.

The role which television plays in transmission of cultures across national frontiers has been reviewed in this study. This ability of television is a function of its qualities rhetoric, imagery, style and language pervasiveness, culture, consistence, repetitiveness etc which collectively make it the highly successful medium that it has become.

The uses and gratification theory have provided ready explanation of why the youths highly associate with the medium which provide them with message and images that they view and accept.

The theoretical synthesis of acculturation, cultivation, mainstreaming, projection and perception of reality taken within the ideological perspective of media hegemony, have shown that television can be used positively or otherwise to foster the growth and development of culture, to assimilate, or completely destroy it. The television was also shown to be a good, but not in any way a dominating contributory to the unhealthy desire by Nigerian youths to emigrate to the Western world.

5.2 Recommendations

With the implications of the findings been clearly put in focus in the preceding chapters, it is the researchers’ view that no further time should be wasted in apportioning blames to individuals or bodies for their roles in the cultural imperialism issue.

The cultural media domination that does exist in the Nigeria content can only take place within the complicity and social consent of the dominated cultures (Cuthbert 1985) and Nigerian youths as well as other audience members seen to offer willing compliance.

However, the following recommendations are put forward by the researcher as means of putting an end to our cultural values genocide and communication neo-colonialism.

  1. The media managers and practitioners as gate-keepers must develop a Nigerian cultural inclination and consciousness that will allow for the production of programmes reflecting the Nigerian idiom, develop its own television rhetoric and creative ability.
  2. The Nigerian journalist should be aware of his responsibilities towards the community which is the principle way of helping development. As long as he realizes that the conduct of his duty has bearing on mind what is good for the society, then he will always guard against feeding his audience with imperialistic messages.
  3. The broadcast houses should also create and project an in-house policy requiring that staff must aim their indigenous name at least while on air. This will make people especially the youths to identify themselves as Africans and not imitators of Europeans and Americans. This recommendation may sound trivial but it will likely go a long way to restoring the pride of being Africans or Nigerian youths. The efforts of African independent television (AIT) in this respect are highly welcomed.
  4. Also, a policy should be formulated to ensure that only professionals take charge of the business of films movies production.
  5. Further studies should also explore the possible relationship between viewership of Western television and the academic performance of Nigerian students which according to WAEC and JAMB results of recent years appear to be dwindling.

5.3 Conclusion

The researches of this research problem have shown that youths of Nigeria can confront the problem of Western television programmes destroying our cultural values.

The educators, parents, community leaders, elites should also by this means help the youths confront the undignified and distorted images so prevalent in Western television.

Given the number of broadcast houses in existence in Nigeria, the researcher believes the country is ready for broad equipment manufacturing industry. The private and public sector should consider this angle more seriously so as to reduce the total dependence of Nigerian broadcast industry on industrialized journey.

Considering the scope and limitations of this study along with its findings, there is need for further speech research in this area. Further research in this area should involve a control group to be consisted of youths who are in the rural areas where television is not available. More studies should also be geared toward defining the cultural values of Nigeria as an entity and as such denies ways of packaging these uniting materials for broadcast to Nigeria.

The researcher also believes that there is a better tomorrow if the above recommendations are followed towards restoring the cultural values of Nigerian youths.

Finally, the researcher believes that the educators, community leaders, television houses (government and private), the censorship board etc can help in further research on this topic in order to solve this destroyable element of our indigenous cultures.

5.4 Suggestion For Further Studies.

Due to the research limitations, time and resource. The researcher suggests that further research should be done on this topic base on the following:

  1. How to discourage the Nigerian youths from watching Western movies
  2. How to improve locally produced product
  3. How to discourage Nigerian youths from imitating Western Stars.

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