Institutional Aggression

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  • Created on: 14-03-13 12:06
Preview of Institutional Aggression

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Institutional aggression
May occur within groups or institutions e.g. the army. But also can happen between
groups. More complex processes and conditions than interpersonal aggression.
Within groups
Wortley ­ over 26,000 reported prisoner on prisoner assaults in US prisons that led to
83 deaths.
Importation model ­ Irwin and Cressey:
Prisoners bring social traits and history with them to
the prison
Prisoners not `blank slates'
Bring normative systems from the outside world into
the prison
Deprivation model ­ Paterline and Peterson:
Aggression result of stressful and oppressive
conditions in prison
Crowding, fear etc
Davies and Burgess ­ those staff with longer length of
service were less likely to suffer from an assault
Form of institutional bullying based on tradition to discipline junior members
and maintain strict pecking order
Vyugin ­ Private Sychev was so brutally beaten at military school that he had
to have amputation of his legs and genitalia
Social context has a powerful influence in whether people will inflict harm on
one another. In Zimbardo's prison experiment it had to be stopped after 6
days because the `guards' had become so aggressive to the `prisoners'
Of 60 reported deaths due to hazing, only 3 were women Nuwer
Between Groups ­ Genocide
Murder of 800,000 Tutsi by Hutu extremists in Rwanda
Staub: 5 stages of genocide

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Dehumanisation ­ if target group is dehumanised the group members are seen as
worthless animals and therefore are not worthy of the normal human moral
consideration. The Hutu referred to the Tutsi as cockroaches.
Obedience to authority ­ Milgram believed that if people could administer shocks just
because they were told too he thought the Nazi regime had no trouble killing innocent
people if they were told.
Importation model has received research support especially in terms of
individual factors.…read more

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Biology is an important factor
Bond carried out a supporting study for serotonin. He did a study of
antidepressants (drugs which elevate serotonin levels) and found that
patients did show reduced irritability and impulsive aggression when taking
the drugs.
To improve, the diathesis-stress model should be used. This model
incorporates both our nature and nurture in explaining institutional
aggression. This means that the theory could gain more validity.…read more


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