Psychology AQA Aggression Institutional

Instutuional Aggression Cards for revision, including studies and definitions.

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  • Created by: Jess
  • Created on: 04-01-14 17:44

Institutional Aggression

The term 'Institutional Aggression' refers to anti social behaviour in a large scale environment such as prison, schools etc.

It can be both sides of the organisation being violent. 

There are two types of institutional aggression:

1. Situational Aggression

2. Importation Aggression.

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Situational Aggression 1

Situational aggression refers to norms in the prison being apart of the violence exhibited by the prisoners. Including:

-Organisation such as leadership or management or the staff.

-Physical such as levels of security.

-Staff characteristics such as gender, experience and how they are with prisoners.

  • Zimbardo used his 'Lucifer' Effect (good people turn evil) to apply to the Abu Grahb missonaries who prfromed evil acts upon their prisoners, and used images as evidence. 

There are two models for situational:

-Deprivation Model by Sykes

-The Popcorn Model

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Deprivation Model

Sykes claimed that due to the deprivation of many things, prisoners would rebel and cause violence. He used his prison study to prove this.

There are five main depriavtions:

Liberty, as they no longer got to be trusted in the free world.

Autonomy, as someone else now chooses when you sleep, eat etc,

Goods and Services, as they don't get any luxeries they once had.

Heterosexual Relationships

Security, as violent behaviour can still incur from inside.

All of these add up to create a very violent inmate who is frustrated at their deprivation.

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Popcorn Model

The Popcorn model suggests that like popcorn, inmates require 'heat' to make them 'pop' spreading throughout the prison.

This presumes that if the 'heat' or whatever causes the violence, is dealt with, the violence inside the prison will deter. However, it can be difficult to work out what causes the violence in the first place, and my link more to the importation model, or hat has been brought in.

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Importation Model

As the name suggests, the importation model describes norms that are imported into the prison. This could be traits or social histories that they bring with them which subsequently leads to them being violent. 

Alcohol addiction is a main cause, as Mills et al showed by their study in which they surveyed 202 inmates newly admitted to a prison. Using his alcohol independence scale, he saw that those who were higher on it, showed more signs of violence. 

There are three types of main subcultures spotted in prisons (Irwin and Cressey)

1.Criminal Subculture in which norms ad vaues are followed from their thief career,2. Convict Subculture, where they want to gain dominence within the prison, which is infulenced by factors from outside the prison, 3. 'Straight' Subculture, in which they are one time offenders and seek more with the prison guards, hence less aggession.

The most likely to be violent are young non whites, who tend to come from subcultures where agrression is respected and violence is seen as a good thing. 

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To Conclude...

Aggression is based on three main things:

The aggressor, the victim and the situation.

This leads to violence, so sort the variables out, and hopefully, violence will decrease.

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