Theories On Aggression Essay

4775 words - 19 pages

The Theoretical Development of AggressionAggression and violence affect society in a variety of ways. It is the general consensus that our society is becoming increasingly more violent. However, it is shocking to realize the amount of violence that is committed by teenagers, or even younger children. It is becoming not uncommon to pick up the local newspaper and read about a child, or group of children, that has committed a horrifying atrocity to other human beings. With each horrendous story the reader becomes desensitized to the violence in our world.Violence is an epidemic in our country. According to the U.S. Department of Justice (1994), there were 6.6 million violent crimes in 1992, 13% of which involved handguns. The number of violent crimes reached its peak in 1981, but has stayed relatively constant since then. Teenagers and young adults aged 16-24 consistently have the highest rate of violent crime, compared to other age groups (U.S. Department of Justice, 1994). Our society is becoming increasingly violent. Aggression in children is related to violence in adulthood. Haapasalo and Tremblay (1994) showed that one could predict delinquency in a child quite accurately by examining earlier aggression.It is important to understand to nature of the relationship between aggression, delinquency, and violence. Moffett, Caspi, Dickenson, Silva, and Stanton (1996) suggested that most serious forms of antisocial behavior have an origin in aggression during early childhood. Lynam (1996) also found chronic offenders can be identified early in childhood, due to their high level of aggression at an early age. While Loeber and Stouthamer-Loeber (1998) question the validity of these conclusions, I believe that an aggressive child will be an aggressive, and possibly violent, adult.Aggression is an area of social psychology on which much research is focused. Social and developmental psychologists have tried to discover some of the underlying mechanisms that have resulted in an increased level of aggression in children today, compared to children in the past. Several theories have emerged in the past few decades that attempt to explain the development of aggression in children. These theories can be categorized into three groups: innate theories of aggression, drive-reduction theories of aggression, and social learning theories of aggression (Lesko, 1997). Innate theories, often called biological theories, explain aggression as a natural, unavoidable behavior to which some individuals are biologically predisposed. Drive-reduction theorists claim that aggression is a drive that is elicited by external stimuli, and social learning theorists state that aggression is a learned behavior (Lesko, 1997).In the past 50 years, the theories that have been most supported at that time reflect the Zeitgeist, or spirit of the times. Before 1950, aggression was best explained by the psychoanalytic theory of Sigmund Freud. In the 1950s, aggression was believed to be a...

Find Another Essay On Theories on Aggression

Biological Theory vs. Behaviorist Theory in Aggression

1371 words - 5 pages the most students usually gets the most study time from students. The spouse who threatens to get the maddest gets their way. The male who acts the most macho and aggressive gets the praise of certain groups of males. For decades psychologists have attempted to find the causes of aggression. The focus of this paper will be on the biological as well as the behavioral theory of aggression. The goal being, to better understand the issue of aggression

"A number of important biological, learning, emotional and environmental factors combine in various ways to produce aggression in various situations." Discuss

1264 words - 5 pages than self-destructive, but agreed with Darwin in saying that aggression is instinctual. Many psychologists have different views on aggression but it is true however, that the factors that contribute to aggression are those of biological, learning, emotional and environmental."In all of nature, there is nothing so threatening to humanity as humanity itself." (Thomas, Lewis, 1981). Human aggression dates back to our primate ancestors. There is

Sport, Aggression, Violence and Victimization

1256 words - 5 pages beholder is a serious shortcoming of social norm theories. What one individual or group considers aggressive or violent may differ starkly in comparison to the perception of other individuals or groups. As such, what is considered legitimate or illegitimate aggression depends on whose definition is being privileged (Young, 2007). Likewise, violence in sports is inextricably tied to culture, power, and ideology, and can be best understood when


835 words - 3 pages Aggression is defined as any behavior that is intended to harm someone. Several studies have shown that exposure to television violence increased aggressiveness and that aggressive children tend to look for the more violent programs. These are not the only factors being studied though. There are several theories that branch out from such ideas. There are two main factors that can possibly explain aggression; biological and psychosocial

"There is not one single Psychological theory that can adequately account for human aggression and violence." To what extent do you agree with this claim?

1548 words - 6 pages advantage, whether to preserve resources or to gain access to more.There are many limitations to all the biological theory they all depend on energy that is immeasurable aggression is very subjective thus can never really be known. All biological theories are supported by empirical observations of human behaviour, the theories rely on circular logic and presenting links that there is no evidence for. The biological theories suffer badly from

The Nature of Aggression (or is it Nurture?)

1439 words - 6 pages expecting payoffs following aggression. The payoffs may be in the form of (a) stopping aggression by others, (b) getting praise or status or some other goal by being aggressive, (c) getting self-reinforcement and private praise, and (d) reducing tension (1). Both of the above theories seem to rely strictly on factors the fall under the nurture category and the first part of the paper explains the factors that could back the nature side of the

Aggression in Sports

958 words - 4 pages be in football game when 2 players have a confrontation and later on one of those players has possession of the ball and the other player may but in an aggressive tackle to retaliate. Hostile Aggression is having the intent and goal to harm but with the arousal and anger involved. These are occasionally seen during a match, but these acts are the ones that are more than likely going to be written about in the following days newspaper headlines


2524 words - 10 pages behavior due to internalised norms and anticipatory consequences and acts correspondingly, on what it is either rewarded or punished for its reaction (enactive learning). A child, who did not internalize any norms which contradict aggressive behavior during the socialization or believes it is normal to behave so, will behave aggressively with a high probability.3. 6 Frustration-aggression theory (Dollard et al.)Unlike the drive theories Dollard

Perspectives on fear and Aggression

1294 words - 5 pages Perspectives on Fear and AggressionIn the study of Psychology, particularly human behaviour, both aggression and fear are hotly debated topics among theorists. Aggression and fear are both inherent in our world and both serve different functions. Fear refers to a personal fear and can be observed on a personal level, whereas aggression is a group subject, usually concerned with more than one person. These two very primal emotions seem almost out

Lit Review on Gaming's affect on aggression

1858 words - 7 pages is based mainly on males and not females. This means that it is not ecologically valid as you can not apply a lot of these theories to women who traditionally in society did not hunt they relied more on their support networks, but women still show signs of aggression. Psychologists have come up with the tend and befriend theory. This suggests that women do not experience aggression in the same way as men, their aggression occurs as a defensive

How far is Agression Socially Constructed?

2221 words - 9 pages behaviour. The thoery has been able to provide answers or possible explanations for most elements of controversy in psychology. It has not, however, been able to asess whether behaviour is predominantly environmental or based on free will, nor has the thoery been used to explain role of inner feelings on behaviour.Also to be considered is cognitive theories, these have examined whether patterns of aggression are differen from those of normal

Similar Essays

Theories Of Aggression Essay

1493 words - 6 pages support in this area. As technology advances over the next few decades, we will continue to see an increase in experimental evidence supporting ecological theories. Although there has been extensive research on the frustration-aggression hypothesis, it has had a minor impact on developmental psychology. While frustration and aggression seem to be closely linked, the simple presence of frustration is not enough in itself to cause aggression. Overall

Social Psychological Theories Of Aggression Essay

1320 words - 5 pages Social Psychological Theories of Aggression Social learning theorists propose that behaviour, such as aggression is learnt through observation, imitation and behaviour shaping. This behaviour is learnt automatically through observation of male and female role models, for example parents, peers and media characters. Whether or not this behaviour is imitated depends on the type of reinforcement that the role model

Aggression Discuss The Three Psychological Approaches According To Freud, Skinner And Rogers(Psychodynamic, Behaviourist And Humanistic Theories)

1691 words - 7 pages than looking at the long-term consequences?The different approaches of Freud and Skinner offer interesting theories about the sources of aggression. Take violence on the television for instance. Freud may have considered this as a cathartic experience thus reducing the drive of aggression by way of siphoning off the built up pressure as discussed earlier. On the other hand however, Skinner would consider that violence on the television would serve

Position Paper: Aggression

891 words - 4 pages discounted. The “Blank Slate” or tabula rasa theory states that humans are an empty slate to be filled with knowledge and behavior at birth (Locke). Humans are innately peaceful, and only learn how to hate and manipulate through society (Rousseau). Therefore, aggression is learned, not innately present. These theories have been accepted by many people, and influences how we teach children today. Applied to aggression, it has given rise to