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Lecture 8

Lecture 8-What is Aggression Nov 4

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Chapter 9: Aggression & Antisocial Conduct
Nov 4th, 2008-11-04
What is Aggression?
- Thanatos
o &µ[vu(}]v}vo(-destructive instincts which all human have
o Anger build up and releases once it passes a critical point in the form of aggression
- Behavioural definition of aggression
o Any action that delivers noxious stimuli to another organism
- Intentional definition of aggression
o The act is aggressive provided the actor had a hostile intent
o Hostile intent
o Instrumental aggression
Theories of Aggression
- Frustration/aggression hypothesis
o Frustration triggers aggression and that all aggressive acts can be traced to frustration
- Proactive aggressor
o High level of aggression children who find aggressive acts easy to perform and who rely
on aggression as a mean of solving social problems or achieving their goals
- Reactive aggressors
o High level of aggression children b/c they overattribute hostile intent of others and cant
control their anger long enough to seek non-hostile solutions
o Hostile attribution bias
Tendency to view harm done under ambiguous circumstances as hostile and
attribute that to the actor
Developmental Trends in Aggression
- Conflict
o Circumstances in which two or more persons have incompatible needs, goals, and
- Retaliatory aggression
o Aggressive acts elicited by real or imagined provocations
o Happens b/c it is the norm for school children
- Passive victims
o Socially withdrawn and anxious children whom bullies torment even though they appear
to have done nothing to trigger the abuse
- Provocative victims
o Hot tempered children who are victimized b/c they are disliked and irritate their peers
- Chronic persistence trajectory
o Highly aggressive early in life and display same or escalating aggression throughout
childhood and adolescnece
- High level desister trajectory
o Highly aggressive early on then drecrease
- Moderate-level desister trajectory
o Moderately aggressive early on then decrease
- No-problem trajectory
o Low in aggression throughout
- Late-onset trajectory
o Non-aggressive early on then temporarily become aggressive during adolescence
Sex Differences in Aggression
- Relational aggression
o Aggression such as rumour spreading, exclusion etc.
Cultural and Subcultural Influences on Aggression
- Collective efficacy
o Neighbourhoods in which ppl are well connected and look out for one another, and
monitor others to keep good public order
Family Influences on Aggression
- Coercive home environment
o A home in which family members annoy and bicker with one another
Methods of Controlling Aggression and Antisocial Behaviour
- Catharsis hypothesis
o Aggressive urges are reduced when ppl witness or commit real or symbolic acts of
o Cathartic technique
Way of decreasing aggression by getting ppl to hit inanimate objects
- Incompatible-response technique
o Nonpunitive method of behaviour modification in which the actor only addresses the
most serious offence and do not offer attention rewards
- Time out
o Children who are misbehaving are removed from the environment for a period of time