Discuss Two or More Psychological Explanations for Institutional Aggression.(Grade a)

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Discuss two or more psychological explanations for institutional aggression. The importation model is a dispositional theory which states that an individual would bring in – import – characteristics from outside of prison which lead them to be aggressive in daily life. This then leads to aggression while incarcerated. Cheeseman said that men have a certain way of behaving, probably why they ended up in prison to begin with, which they then apply to their new setting. Irwin and Cressey found 3 subcultures within prisons, the criminal, the convict and the straight/conventional. They found that the convict subculture were most likely to be aggressive as they are influenced by deprivation, and bring values of this into the prison setting. Also, certain factors such as age, sex and race can affect the level of aggression you exhibit in prisons, as found by Janus. Support comes from DeLisi who examined prison records of 831 prison inmates from South West USA. They made note of prisoners who had been involved in street and prison gangs. They found a small but significant relationship between gang membership and prison aggression. This implies that they imported subculture values of being in a gang with them into prisons. Further support comes from Poole and Regoli who looked at juvenile correction facilities and found that inmates who were violent outside of prison where more likely to be violent inside of prison. This shows that they may have imported aggressive characteristics into the prison setting with them. However, in a real life setting this theory isn’t particularly useful, as it does not give any suggestions as to how aggression can be reduced within prisons. Also it is deterministic to say that people of a certain race, age and education level will be aggressive within prison as it ignores the fact that humans have free will and also would lead to stereotyping within prison. This theory can be considered socially sensitive as people will be stereotyped and...
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