Aggression 2011Day1-class

Aggression 2011Day1-class - Aggression Aggression...

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Unformatted text preview: Aggression Aggression Definition = any form of intentional behavior aimed at doing harm to another person (who is motivated to avoid such treatment) Physical or verbal. Key: – Behavior – Intentional – Aimed at another person – Victim wants to avoid harm Types of Aggression Types of Aggression Hostile = the harm inflicted is an end in itself. – Example: punching someone in a fight. Just want to hurt them. Instrumental = the harm inflicted is a means to some other end. – Example: muggings, football Relational = manipulates social situations (social) – Example: excluding someone from a group Gender differences Gender differences Males are more violent than females in virtually every culture ever studied. – Men commit the vast majority of murders – Men comprise the large majority of murder victims Boys play more aggressive games Boys like more violent books Even infant boys show more anger Gender differences Gender differences Men tend to be more physically/overtly aggressive – More violent crimes, more aggressive games Women tend to be more relationally/covertly aggressive – More exclusion, gossiping Circumstances matter – Provocation vs. no provocation Biological theories of aggression Biological theories of aggression Instinct theory (Freud) – Thanatos= instinctual drive toward death, resulting in aggressive behavior – Energy must be turned into something positive/useful Hydraulic theory: unexpressed emotions build up & are explosive Biological theories of aggression Biological theories of aggression Evolutionary theory – Aggression to environmental cues evolved over evolutionary time because aggression has helped our ancestors survive. – Should aggress less toward genetic relatives Children living with a stepparent are much more likely to be fatally abused than children living with both biological parents Biological theories of aggression Biological theories of aggression Evolutionary theory Men engage in more risk taking between the ages of 16 to 24, when entering the arena of mate competition Conflict and Aggression – Homicidal victims – Male violence Biological factors Biological factors Genetic – temperament Neural – Amygdala stimulation related to aggression Other species Biological Factors: Hormones Biological Factors: Hormones Aggression related hormones – Testosterone: = more aggression Castrated sex offenders – Serotonin: = more aggression Sex and Testosterone Sex and Testosterone Social psychologist Jim Dabbs & colleagues found high testosterone levels in: – Aggressive boys – Violent criminals – Men and women with criminal records – Military veterans who went AWOL or got into trouble after their service Dutch psychologist Stephanie VanGoozen & colleagues (1995, 1997) studied people undergoing sex change operations: – Women changing to men got testosterone injections – became more aggressive and sexual – Men changing to women got testosterone suppressants – became less aggressive and sexual Alcohol Alcohol Why does alcohol affect aggression? – Lowered inhibitions – Use more primary brain structures Reduced cerebral cortex activity Increased midbrain (limbic system) activity. Learned theories of aggression Learned theories of aggression Social learning theory =we learn social behavior (incl. aggression) by observing and imitating and by being rewarded and punished – When aggression is rewarded, it’s more likely to be repeated / imitated – Direct and vicarious learning What do we mean by rewards? What do we mean by rewards? A bully beats a kid up and gets his lunch money Aggressive sports teams win more games A husband gains control over his wife by beating her A cop gets information by roughing up a suspect Bandura’s Bobo doll studies Bandura’s Bobo doll studies Some children observed an adult beat a “Bobo” doll Other children did not (control condition) Children were then left to play in a room full of toys, including Bobo Those who observed the adult were more likely to imitate the aggressive behavior Who/what do we learn from? Who/what do we learn from? Parents – Ex. Physically punitive parents tend to have physically aggressive children Society/culture – Ex. Rape victim sentenced with 200 lashes in Saudi Arabia, honor killings – Gang initiation and culture of violence Media – Ex. Exposure to violent TV/video games increases aggression Sources of Aggression Sources of Aggression We can also consider situational influences “Culture of Honor” – Emphasize honor and social status for men, and aggression to protect that honor – “Machismo” meet challenges to masculinity via fighting/weapons – Southern duels, responses to an insult, pitchers from the South versus North Other factors that influence Other factors that influence aggression Frustration = perception that you’re being prevented from attaining a goal – Frustration­aggression theory = frustration increases the probability of an aggressive response. Frustration anger/annoyance readiness to aggress Especially likely when we are closer to attaining our goal Other factors that influence Other factors that influence aggression Aversive situations – Pain Participants held one hand in lukewarm water or painfully cold water Participants in cold water condition were more irritable and more likely to aggress – Blasted other people with loud, unpleasant noise Other factors that influence Other factors that influence aggression Aversive situations – Heat More violent crimes committed in summer months Riots are more likely to occur on hot days Participants in a hot room are more likely to report feeling aggressive/hostile on questionnaires Temperature and aggression Temperature and aggression 40 Uprisings Family disturbances Rapes Assaults 35 30 25 Percentage 20 of yearly total 15 10 5 0 Wnter Spring Summer Fall 0.7 0.6 Batters hit by pitches per game 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0 Below 70 70-79 Temperature 80-89 90 and above Other factors that influence Other factors that influence aggression Arousal – Excitation transfer theory= arousal created by one stimulus can be misattributed to a second stimulus Arousal from exercise, violent movies, a frightening situation, etc. can be attributed to emotions like anger – which can then lead to aggression. Not angered Angered Shock level delivered by participants Did not exercise Exercised Other factors that influence Other factors that influence aggression Aggressive cues/stimuli – The presence of objects associated with aggression (e.g., guns) can increase the probability of aggression – Weapons effect Priming of hostile thoughts, memories, scripts Examples: – Children who played with toy guns were more likely to knock down another child’s blocks – College students delivered more electric shock when a gun was nearby than when a badminton racket was nearby Weapons effect Weapons effect Experience with weapons influences aggressive thoughts – Pictures of hunting guns are more likely to prime aggressive thoughts among nonhunters, whereas pictures of assault guns were more likely to prime aggressive thoughts among hunters (Bartholow et al., 2004) – Men who belong to a shooting association are less aggressive, angry, impulsive, and report lower levels of cold and insensitive attitudes compared to men who do not (Nagtegaal et al., 2009) Aggression Aggression All of these factors can lead to aggression through: – Aggressive thoughts (e.g, scripts) – Negative affect/mood – Hostile attributions Aversive Situation Hostile cognition Negative emotion Aggressive behavior Arousal Conclusions Conclusions Aggression is complex Result of – Biological factors ( testosterone) – Learned factors (imitation) – Personal factors (arousal) – Situational factors (heat, honor) ...
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