The Role of Nature vs Nurture in Violent Behavior

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The Role of Nature vs Nurture in Violent Behavior
Amanda Collier
COM/156
04/21/2013
Renee Gurley

It can be argued that Bobby Boucher was aggressive because of an overbearing mother. However, in another way, it can also be argued that he showed such aggression because of the abandoning father and the criticizing students at his school. Although a silly and maybe even dull-minded movie, 1998’s “The Waterboy” does shed a bit of light on the argument of nature vs. nurture in relation to violent behavior. A debate that has been a hot topic for decades; there are two highly popular theories: Violence is a natural phenomenon that should be treated, or violence is a learned behavior that children should be taught to avoid. Before making an assumption or decision, onlookers of the debate should consider how genetics may come into play in the behaviors of individuals, how environment may affect an individual’s behaviors, and how they both may interact to create violence as a whole.

In order to understand the amount of effect that serotonin has on violent behavior, it is important to break it all down “to a science.” Serotonin is a natural hormone that acts as an aid in transporting impulses throughout the nervous system. Mood is highly affected by this hormone, depending on the levels present within the body. For example, there are different reactions amongst different people to things such as traffic violations. One who has an adequate amount of serotonin in his or her body will react with a bit of annoyance, but no yelling. One who has an irregularly high amount of serotonin in the blood may react by yelling and even starting a fight with other drivers. Reif, Rosler, et ad. (2007) explain that abnormal levels of serotonin in the nervous system can result in misinterpretations of in everyday difficulties and situations, thus producing opportunities for individuals to react violently. Natural instincts are heightened to an illogical level....
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