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1. PSYA 3 Aggression Revision List of Studies Remember you do not need to know every single study listed here, but you do need to know enough to be able to present a…
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  • 1. PSYA 3 Aggression Revision List of Studies Remember you do not need to know every single study listed here, but you do need to know enough to be able to present a coherent discussion of the pros and cons of the various explanations and models. Also some of the studies are multi-purpose and so can be used under different sections. This is by no means a definitive list there are plenty more studies that could have been included but these are plenty for the whole topic. When evaluating you can comment upon methodology and AID (Approaches Issues and Debates) etc. Social Psychological explanations of aggression Bandura 1961 and 1963 Social Learning Theory children who witnessed aggressive models were more likely to use aggression. Involves, Attention, Retention, Reproduction, Motivation and Self Efficacy. Burgess and Ashers 1966 used SLT to explain deviancy. Phillips 1986 the homicide rate in US increased in the week following an major boxing match giving support to SLT. Runciman 1966 aggressive behaviour might be more due to imagined or real relative deprivation. Dollard et al 1939 imitation on its own not enough there also needs to be a build up of frustration and or environmental cues. Buss Booker and Buss 1972 non convincing eveidence that cues lead to arousal and aggression. Singer, Bush and Lublin 1965 group situations inhibitions reduced change from normal standards of behaviour. (Deindividuation) Zimbardo 1969 reduced inhibitions increased electric shocks. Can be related to deindividuation and or agentic state Milgram. Diener et al 1976 large groups and or greater disguise by Halloween costumes - increased anti-social behaviour. Silke 2003 severity of attacks depends upon disguise masked more attacks. IRA Watson 1973 23 societies greater disguise lead to greater aggression. 1
  • 2. Bergen et al 1973 reduced inhibitions in dark room lead to sexual not aggressive behaviour. Berkowitz and Lepage 1967 cues such as knives and guns influence behaviour turning anger to aggression. Explanations of Institutional Aggression Remember although all the studies we have looked at are based on prison studies the situational model and dispositional model can be applied to any institution school office etc. and you must describe these models first before you can use the research to assess their relative weaknesses and strengths. Also do not forget AID Approaches, Issues and Debates. Zimbardo 1973 Stanford Prison experiment (Situational Model) Sykes 1958 5 deprivations (Situational Model) Mills et al 1998 202 inmates Canadian prison ADS severe drug or alcohol dependency leads to higher levels of serious institutional misconduct. (Dispositional or Importational Model) Irwin and Cassey 1962 criminal subcultures (Dispositional or Importational Model) Dilulio 1987 Management model (part of Situational Model) Folger and Starlicki 1995 The pop corn model (part of Situational Model) McCorkle et al 1995 compared relative strengths of deprivation and management models found management to be more important in prison aggression. (both are part of Situational Model) Megargee 1976 negative correlation between living space and aggression probably because management put in place more strategies to cope. Management model (part of Situational Model) Delisi 2004 small significant relationship between gang membership and aggression (Dispositional or Importational Model) Poole and Rogoli 1983 Juvenile correction facilities inmates who had been violent out side more likely to be violent inside. (Dispositional or Importational Model) Perhaps we are heading to a conclusion that both models are needed as well as the biological and social psychological explanations from the other sections? 2
  • 3. Neural and Hormonal Factors in Aggression Bard and Mountcastle 1953 rage in cats lesioned upper and lower brain concluded hypothalamus initiates aggression and cerebral cortex reduces it. Supported by Flynn in 1960s. Amongst humans, if an amygdalectomy (removal of the amygdala) is carried out, it reduces violent behaviour but at the cost of losing emotion! Phineas Cage Case Study Harlow 1968 Tamping iron in left jaw up behind eye and into brain survived 11 years but became very aggressive after accident and could never hold down a job. Zagrodzka et al 1998 cat research damage to the amygdala was significant in inducing predator like attacks. Potegal et al 1994 lab research on rats corticomedial amygdala was possibly the centre for mediating aggressive reaction. Potegal 1991 hamsters more active neurons in nucleus of amygdala during aggressive acts. Potegal et al 1994 argue generalisation from animals to humans valid because differences are qualitative, same basic circuitry. Blair et al 2001 aggression in institutionalised humans proposed psychopathic tendencies due to damage in the amygdala supported by animal studies. Mead 1936 Brown 1986 culture affects aggression Anderson and Dill 2000 Friedman 2002 aggression learned from media, biological view ignores environmental factors. Bushman 1993 1997 McDonald et al 1996 alcohol leads to aggression by interfering with information processing, comments/behaviours are given significance and can thus lead to aggressive acts. Carlsmith and Anderson 1979 Kenrick et al 1986 Environmental factors such as heat noise can explain aggression. 3
  • 4. Testosterone Nelson (1995) reviewed research into how hormones influence aggressive behaviour. Generally there does seem to be a positive correlation between the level of androgens (male sex hormone e.g. testosterone) circulating in the body and aggressive behaviour Wagner et al (1979 page 132) shows that if a male mouse is castrated, overall levels of aggression tend to reduce. If the castrated mouse receives testosterone aggression levels increase. Simpson (2001) argues that ‘testosterone is only one of a myriad of factors that influence aggression and the effects of environmental stimuli have at times been found to correlate more strongly’. This ignores the potential for individual difference. Harisson et al (2000) noted that after giving testosterone to 56 men (aged 20-50), when given a frustration-inducing computer game, aggressive responses were significantly increased. But this effect was not the same for the entire sample. Huston et al (2007) showed how men with high levels of testosterone often perform well in competitive tasks but poorly on cooperative tasks. Mazur and Booth (1998) who, after reviewing a number of studies in this field, concluded that men with higher levels of testosterone ‘are more likely to divorce, or remain single, be arrested for offences other than traffic violations; to buy or sell stolen property; to incur debts; and to use weapons in fights’. Basal Model versus Reciprocal Model Kleinesmith et al (2006) showed how testosterone levels change as a result of behaving aggressively. Gun or game assembly chilli water experiment. The conclusion from this study was that environmental stimuli such as guns may increase aggressiveness partially via increases in the hormone testosterone. Sapolsky (1997) ‘middle-ranking monkey’ study. It seems that testosterone doesn’t cause aggression, but it may exaggerate the aggression that is already there as a result of other factors. Pillay 2006 Testosterone associated with atheletic qualities 94 athletes testosterone levels varied with sport that was played those in aggressive sports highest levels of testosterone. 4
  • 5. Harrison et al 2000 56 men frustrating computer game increased aggression. Huston et al 2007 males with high levels of testosterone perform well on competitive tasks but not co-operative tasks. Mazur and Booth 1998 men with high levels of testosterone more likely to divorce, be single be arrested handle stolen goods have bad debts and use weapons. Mazur and Booth 1998 2100 air force veterans longitudinal 10 years 4 medical examinations in that time testosterone levels varied reduced upon marriage increased upon divorce. Serotonin-Neural Transmitters Davidson et al (2000) suggested that serotonin may provide an inhibitory function so that when comparing violent criminals to non-violent ones, the levels of serotonin found in violent criminals were markedly lower. (Lenard, 2008). Serotonin has effects all over the body. It would seem that ‘low levels of serotonin in the brain can result in impulsive behaviour, aggression, overeating, depression, alcohol abuse and violent suicide’ Linnoila and Virkkunen (1992) who reported that low levels of serotonin are linked to ‘impulsivity and explosive acts of violence’. Morand et al, 1983 In some clinical trials, tryptophan and Desyrel 5HTP (a serotonergic drug) has been given to juvenile delinquents to reduce their aggressive tendencies Caution must still be used before attributing the cause of aggression to serotonin levels. Genetic Factors in Aggression This is where the free will /determinism debate can be discussed Court-Brown 1965-67 XYY has been linked to higher aggression Theilgaard 1984 only found a relationship between XYY and reduced height 1 in 1000 males are XYY Theilgaard used TAT test XYY men gave more aggressive verbal responses to images than XY men but were not more likely to aggress. Salposky 1997 genes regulate aggression via testosterone MAOA monoamine oxidase A 1995 found by accident mice that lack MAOA are more aggressive 5
  • 6. CASES ET AL 1995 Dutch family males that carried a rare MAOA gene mutationhad high aggression Berkowitz 1993 reviewed evidence from criminal cases of 1930s and found concordance rate of 75% for MZ twins and 24% for DZ twins. This suggests that genetics do influence crime rates, including aggression but does not rule out environmental factors. Mednick et al 1984 14000 adoptees With no criminal parents 14% conviction Adoptive parent criminal biological parent not 15% conviction Adoptive parent not biological parent criminal 20 % conviction Both set of parents criminal 25% conviction Selective breeding in domestic animals has been used to raise less aggressive pets. Silver foxes in Russia have been bred to be less aggressive Nelson 2006 Newman et al 2005 discovered gene that is linked to aggression Evolutionary explanations of human aggression including infidelity and jealousy Lorenz 1966 4 main drivers of behaviour fear, hunger, reproduction and aggression . Aggression ensured 1.strongest and fittest survived 2. Survival of offspring 3. Distributed the species in a balanced way because of territorial behaviour. Ritualised behaviour of threat displays and appeasement gestures animals rarely severely injured. Nelson 1974 criticised Lorenz did not include process of learning structural causes or psychological causes of aggression. Fromm 1973 distinguished Malignant aggression an evil act Benign aggression an impulsive act if threatened. Tinbergen claimed 1968 humans are the only species where aggression is not part of an elaborate system of ritual. Waller 2002 Humans evolved living in groups humans define ‘them’ and ‘us’ leads to xenophobia social dominance and violence. Rapoport 1965 we can use symbols so can ‘dehumanise’ individuals and whole groups. Infidelity Buss et al 1992 infidelity triggers an emotional states which leads to behaviours that reduce and or eliminate the threat ie aggression and violence 6
  • 7. Brunk et al 1996 Infidelity triggers different responses in males and females (ref Relationships PIT) Males infidelity uncertainty re paternity therefore triggers jealousy. Aggression due to female infidelity Females infidelity could lead to the male giving his resources (economic and emotional) to another female. Aggression based on loss of emotional etc support. Jealousy Cascardi et al 1995 Jealousy was found to be the most common cause of aggression within relationships Canary et al 1998 Couples with relationship conflict said that the anger and jealousy was due to jealousy Holztworth et al 1991 Some violent males lack effective ways of mediating in situations involving jealousy. Haden & Hojjat 2006 Men are more likely to consider aggressive actions than women Women tend to be more emotionally and behaviourally reactive. Morenz and Lane 1996 They investigated Murder suicides. These account for 1000 to 1500 deaths a year. They suggest that the causal factor could be rejection. This supports the evolutionary theory that jealousy results from the desire to keep ones mate. Buss and Shackelford 1997. Men show mate tending and guarding activities which can be aggressive. This is to prevent sexual infidelity. Explanations of group displays of aggression in humans for example sports events and lynch mobs. Le Bon 1896 Contagion Theory. The group takes on the view of the collective mind. De Individuation Theory. This is based on Le Bons classic crowd theory to explain the loss of identity that occurs when we are in a large group. There are three main factors: 1 anonymity reduces feelings of accountability 2. Diffusion of responsibility. Feeling less responsible because actions are shared with the group. 3. Group size. The larger the group the above two factors are increased. 7
  • 8. Covergence Theory. Group behaviour is the result of like minded individuals coming together eg football supporters, anti war protesters etc. This does not explain why non violent people would act violently in groups. Emergent Norm Theory Turner and Killian 1957 The crowd is essentially ‘normless’ so they look to see how others are behaving, if any individual stands out this distinctive behaviour gets taken on as the norm. Social Identity Theory. Reicher 1987. People change their personal identity to fit in with the shared social identity of the group 8
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