Lecture on April 11th: Aggression

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Psychology & Brain Sciences
John Bickford

Social Psychology, Lecture on April 11 th Aggression Reasons to think violent video games may have even stronger effects than passive media (such as movies).  Identification with an aggressor increases imitation.  Active participation increases learning.  Practicing entire behavioral sequence.  Violence is continuous.  Repetition increases learning.  Rewards increase learning. Parents as aggressive models.  Physical punishment. o Models aggressive behaviors. o Teaches aggression as social control. o Teaches instrumental aggression. o Parent may become conditioned aversive stimulus. o Parent may become discriminative stimulus. o Can become abusive. Role of heightened arousal,  Excitation transfer. o Arousal produced in one situation “transfers over” to another, unrelated situation.  for example, an event that would normally just be a minor annoyance (being cut off in traffic) might instead be met with rage if you were already upset at something else (being late for work) – the arousal from being late for work “transfers to being cut off.  Arousal dissipates slowly over time, widening the opportunity for transfer.  Intensification of emotional reaction to second situation.  Depends on cognitive appraisal. Person variables related to aggression,  Negative affectivity.  Hostile attribution bias. o Tendency to perceive hostile motives in other people’s ambiguous actions.  Narcissim. o Excessive self-regard.  Tend to be ego defensive.  Tend to react with extreme anger an aggression.  Tend to be rejection sensitive.  Sensation-seekers. o Attracted to aggression
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