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Research paper on violence: Belsky, Freud, Dollard, Bandura, and Miller

Published under category: Writing Help Convenience | 2015-05-19 11:50:55 UTC

Context: Psychology of violence

This is a comparison paper on views of several renowned psychologist, psychiatrists and philosophers on violence. Papers on violence are a regular assignment for psychology students. To have such a custom essay written, ask for writing help from this premium writing service. Belsky Working from a developmental ecological framework, Belsky proposed that violence occurs as a result of interactions between the contexts of maltreatment. Belsky’s model was actually formulated to explain child violence, although it can be generalized to other forms of family violence such as intimate partner violence. According to Belsky’s model, as found in Lorenz, factors that influence whether an individual will be abusive towards a child or an intimate partner operate at and across several levels of the ecology from the most proximal to the most distal (12). These include the level of the individual, the level of the microsystem, the level of the exosystem, and that of macrosystem. The level of the individual comprises of aspects such as individual personality or mental illness, while the level of microsystem includes family level factors such as poverty, single parenthood, or unemployment. The level of exosystem comprises aspects such as community level violence, unemployment rates, and social cohesion, whereas that of macrosystem includes aspects of cultural attitudes to violence and regional policy on family violence. Conversely, Belsky’s developmental-ecological model underscores the fact that family violence is determined by multiple factors, and in implication concluded that there appear to be necessary or sufficient causes of family violence. Further, the developmental-ecological perspective conceptualizes child violence as a social and psychological phenomenon determined by multiple forces acting within the individual, family, community, and culture. Therefore, it is multiply determined by a variety of factors operating through transactional processes at various levels of analysis in the broad ecology of parent-child interactions. At the parent level, risk factors include parental distress, including depression, substance abuse, parental history of child violence and corporal punishment, and poor impulse control. Unrealistic and distorted expectations of children can lead to abuse through a caregiver’s lack of knowledge. Freud Sigmund Freud considers the aspect of aggression to be an important component of personality. In Freud’s formulation, the nature of aggression has a link with the death instinct, however, his ideas on violence were far more complex than being simply about the externalization of the death instinct. Feud considers four different manifestations of aggression that may exist internally or otherwise be discharged. They are: aggression that has its roots in self-preservation and protection of the ego; free floating aggression; aggression that emerges from the externalization of the death instinct which, by definition, has a destructive aim; and aggression that has an intrapsychic location and is absorbed by the superego and turned against the ego. Freud mentioned briefly the role of aggression in three essays on the theory of sexuality and on a fragment analysis of a case of hysteria. In the three essays on the theory of sexuality, Freud finds violence to be a means of sexual mastery over an object. In the fragment analysis of the case on hysteria, Freud considers it a form of resistance to treatment. His first comprehensive attempt to understand violence however, can be found in instincts and their vicissitudes. In the paper, Freud explored elements of love and hate and their relation to self-preservative and sexual instincts. Freud argues that, during the pre-genital stages of development, love and hate are indistinguishable and the infant remains indifferent to his own sadistic actions and injury to his objects. The primary motive at this stage, through incorporating and devouring the object, is the urge for mastery over the object. However, Freud further argues that hate itself has a different instinctual source based in the self-preservative instincts. Conversely, according to Freud and as noted by Lorenz, “the ego hates, abhors, and pursues with intent to destroy all objects which are the source of un-pleasurable feeling for it, without taking into account whether they mean a frustration of sexual satisfaction or the satisfaction of self-preservative needs” (136). Dollard Dollard suggested that violence is always a consequence of frustration. He came up with the frustration-aggression theory whose core proposition have been maintained in most forms of the theory. Dollard defined frustration as a thwarting of expected goal attainment. It is important to note that Dollard was concerned with the external thwarting of an expected goal. In clear opposition to the personality forms of rage, Dollard focused on external occurrences rather than internal psychological developments. In relation, frustration arises not from unconscious forces, not from a battle between the superego and the id for example, but from the failure to receive an expected gratification. Individuals learn to expect reward to result from a given action; frustration stems not from general deprivation, but rather deprivation of an expected reward. The frustration-aggression theory is one of the earliest social psychological theories regarding violence. Moreover, Dollard held that frustration always leads to the desire to aggress, and that all aggression is caused by frustration. Frustration is caused when people are prevented from having something they want. For instance, if one drives to a store because one wants to buy a gift for a friend, although he finds the store closed when he arrives, he will feel frustrated. This frustration can motivate an individual to aggress in some way. For instance, writing an angry letter to the store management about the hours the store is open, or act in a hostile way to people whom must have shopped successfully in the store. In line with the predictions of this theory, frustrating events lead to aggression. In Dollard’s study, the researchers hired students to call strangers on phone to request donations to a charity. Half of the students led to believe that most people would contribute. The other half was led to believe that most people would refuse to contribute. Students who expected most people would contribute showed much higher levels of aggression. Bandura Bandura designed some of the earliest studies on violence with children. He developed a theory of how TV viewing might cause people to act in particular ways (Gannon, Ward, Beech and Fisher 219). This theory, known as social learning theory, emphasized importance of rewards and punishments. In a series of classic experiments, Bandura observed the behavior of nursery school children in a playroom that was filled with toys, among them a Bobo doll which was a punching bag with a sand filled base and red nose that squeaked. The purpose of the experiment was to investigate the circumstances under which children would learn and imitate new aggressive behaviors. Bandura found out that children could learn new aggressive behaviors as easily from a cartoonlike figure as from a human adult, a result that clearly implicates animated TV shows as an unhealthy reservoir of violence. According to Bandura, if a child watching a person on TV who seemed attractive and who received rewards for acting aggressively, then the child would be more likely to imitate that character’s behavior. On the other hand, if a child saw a character who received punishment for acting aggressively, then the child might refrain from acting out any aggressive impulses in real life. Bandura’s theory did not just apply to TV, but was a general theory about the way people learn behaviors. The basic principles could explain how children learn to help people as well as hurt them. Many of Bandura’s experiments used TV and violence to test the theory because the government was giving out grant money to do research on the topic. Although Bandura’s experiments have been criticized as artificial because children were merely hitting an inflated punching bag, other laboratory research has shown that young children will aggress against a human being dressed as a clown just as readily as they will against a Bobo doll. Miller Writing in the Milwaukee journal, Miller said that children growing up in our poorest neighborhoods are far more likely to fare poorly in school, become teenage mothers, suffer chronic unemployment, and resort to crime and violence. According to Miller, they grow up with little investment in their future and little evidence from their bleak environment that the future is something worth investing in. when they pull a gun and risk a jail term, they have very little to risk. That happens all too often in inner-city neighborhoods where poverty and hopelessness have taken hold. Young people often come to believe that their lives are controlled by outside forces and that they have no power to improve their day to day existence. That perceived lack of power, combined with a lack of positive vision for the future, can turn to frustration and rage. Despite the strong economy, many middle-class families face a sudden onset of financial difficulties which increases their frustration. This can also lead to the same sense of hopelessness and powerlessness. For instance, if one takes a child and puts him in an environment with no hope, with no positive role models, no supervision, no parks, with a parent who has no hopes for bettering oneself, what you have is a recipe for violence. References Gannon, Theresa, Tony Ward, Anthony Beech and Dawn Fisher. Aggressive Offenders’ Cognition: Theory, Research and Practice. West Sussex: John Wiley & Sons, 2009. Print. Lorenz, Konrad. On Aggression. Munich: Routledge, 2005. Print. ORDER PLAGIARISM FREE PAPER


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