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Aggression as a Challenge

Theory and research- Current Problems

Edited By Hanna Liberska and Marzanna Farnicka

We live in a world of phenomena created by the human mind and by human experience, namely conflict, aggression, aggressiveness and violence. These phenomena are viewed as constructs of the mind, types of behaviour, particular experiences and emotional states, specific social interactions or even historical and political categories such as social movements, wars, angry social protests etc. The study explores the notions of aggression and violence and from an individual and a social perspective analyses their determinants in various environments in childhood, adolescence and adulthood. It is an attempt to join the global discussion on reaction conditions and key points that are connected with the risk of pathologization of the personality and its behaviour.
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Students’ Aggressive Behavior at High School: A Comparison of Czech and Polish Samples

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Introduction

Aggressive behavior is natural for human beings, even in the earliest stages of childhood. It is a necessary tool for the continuous effort towards self-emancipation and to define one’s own borders in one’s environment and society. Such independence is a basic cultural and personal need, and aggression can be an effective way to satisfy it (Baumaister, Bushman, 2004; Tedechi, Felson, 1994). As a result of an increase of independence, aggressive tendencies are more common during adolescence; such behaviour is normatively connected to a young person’s development (Blatný et al., 2012; Bonino, Cattelino, Ciairano, 2005; Jessor, Jessor, 1977; Moffitt, Caspi, 2001; Martínek, 2009). From an evolutionary perspective, universal definitions of aggression may have arisen because such acts pose a fundamental threat to humans beings (Bandura, 1977; Buss, 1997; Baumaister, Bushman, 2004). The commonly accepted definition by psychologists states that aggression is considered to be any behavior that is performed with the explicit intention of causing harm or damage to a person or object (Dollard et al, 1939; Bandura, 1977; Buss, 1961; Anderson, Bushman, 2002). Additionally, aggressive acts can be divided into multiple categories – for instance, direct and indirect, verbal and physical, active and passive (causing harm through wilful disregard), emotional, frustrational and instrumental (Martínek, 2009). It is necessary to differentiate aggression, hostility and anger (Ramírez, Andreu, 2006).

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