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Hostility, Anger, and Dominance as Mediators of the Sibling Aggression‒School Fighting Relationship: Mechanisms of Violence Generalization

  • Published Date:

    November 29 2018

  • Source:
    Psychol Violence. 10(1):48-57
  • Language:
Filetype[PDF-410.44 KB]

  • Alternative Title:
    Psychol Violence
  • Description:
    Objective: Prior research indicates that siblings play a significant role in the formation of aggressive behavior inside and outside the home. The purpose of the current investigation was to identify the mechanism that links aggression toward siblings, referred to in this study as sibling aggression, with school-related violence and fighting, referred to in this study as school fighting. It was predicted that hostility, anger, and dominance would mediate the sibling aggression‒school fighting relationship. Method: Three candidate intermediary variables (hostility, anger, and dominance) were tested as putative mediators of the sibling aggression‒school fighting relationship in a group of 713 middle-school students (339 boys, 374 girls). It was hypothesized that all three candidate intervening variables would mediate the relationship between sibling aggression and school fighting, with no significant differences in strength of effect between the three mediators. Results: The research hypothesis was partially supported: hostility, but not anger or dominance, successfully mediated the sibling aggression‒school fighting relationship and there was no difference in strength of effect between the three candidate mediators. Conclusions: A practical implication of these results is that aggression prevention and treatment programs may be enhanced by targeting children who display aggressive relationships with siblings and other children in the home in an effort to change cognitive and behavior patterns before they generalize to the school setting and negatively impact the child’s relationships with schoolmates and peers.
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