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Psychology Aggression Essay

707 words - 3 pages

PSYCHOLOGY - AGGRESSION JANUARY 2011 ; discuss evolutionary explanations of human aggression (8+16marks)

Aggression is behaviour directed towards another intended to harm (hostile) or as a means to an end (instrumental). The evolutionary theory explains aggression as an adaptive response to a series of threats to an individual’s survival and reproduction. Aggression is a way of tackling the threats posed to an individual, by eliminating them or reducing the level of their interference.
Mate retention is the act of guarding against mate poaching and maintaining a partner’s interest. This includes direct guarding and negative inducements. Direct guarding is when the male restricts his ...view middle of the document...

Social desirability may also play a role as the females may have presented themselves as vulnerable in order to gain sympathy from the researchers. Males may have reported their partners as likely to be unfaithful as a way of keeping away potential competition by making them look undesirable.

Cuckoldry is when a man has to financially support a child that may not be his. This risk may lead to sexual jealousy as financially providing for this child would reduce the chance of him successfully reproducing himself with his partner due to the time and effort he’d invest into raising the child. As a result, male partner may force his partner to terminate the pregnancy by aggressive force to reduce this risk. Wilson et al (1975) studied women who described their husbands as jealous. He found that these women were more likely to be a victim of violence and 72% of them needed medical attention following male assault. This study does not explore why the men were angry in the first place; other factors could have led to the aggressive behaviour. This also makes the study deterministic as it concludes that jealousy will definitely lead to aggression...

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