Theories of Aggression

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Abstract
We live in a society where aggressive acts happen every day, but do we really know what causes it? Why do certain people seem more aggressive than others? Is there just one thing that controls when and how aggressive someone becomes? How can we come to explain such acts of aggression and violence? Are they a result of societal influences, or are some individuals biologically predisposed to crime? Do brain disorders, hormonal and chemical imbalances, environmental factors, such as heat, noise, air pollution and overcrowding increase our aggression level? Or is it something we choose to obtain? These are all questions that researchers have been addressing for many years. Some scientists try to treat the abnormal aggressive behavior with medication, while others go deeper and try to find out why they have abnormal behavior. Some answers are biological, like genes and hormones, other answers are psychological, like rejection as a cause of aggression, and still others are cultural, blaming aggression on violence in the media. In order to try to understand where aggression may arise from, you must understand how aggression is defined as well as the possibilities that may cause it.

This paper attempts to analyze factors dealing with nature vs. nurture and examine some of the existing theories of aggression. The theories can be classified into three groups: Freud's instinct theory along with Konrad Lorenz’s biological theory (Myers, pg.334), the frustration aggression hypothesis by John Dollard (Myers, pg.338), and Bandura’s social learning theory (Myers, pg.342). After finding the evidence produced for each, it is my goal to draw a conclusion about which theory seems most supported and reasonable.

Who's to Blame for Aggression?
Ever felt you need to smash something or punch someone, yet you couldn't and had to kick the wall instead? Ever wondered why children yell and scream when they want something badly? Ever wondered why a parent of any kind would...
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