Discuss one strategy for reducing violence that addresses biological or cognitive or sociocultural factors.

SC causes of Violence:
1: Violence is the result of power differences social groups
Vygotsky (1930’s):
The dominant group has always displayed dominance, as seen in the biased power relationship between men and women.
Men are more likely to be violent towards women than women are towards men.
If social norms dictate that it is acceptable to be violent towards specific groups, it is likely that people will be violent.
If social norms dictate that people can spank their children, more children will be spanked.
Social norms within a society provide guidance for individuals as to how emotions may be expressed. Norms dictate how power is distributed within the society and define how males and females are supposed to behave
Violent communities breed violent behaviors, since it is a survival mechanism which is learned through modeling (Social Learning Theory plays a role in handing down behaviors that are considered important for members of the society)
(+): Explains violence such as the genocide of the Jews in WW2, the violence against Blacks, Domestic violence.
2: Being in a large group provides a degree of anonymity, which allows an individual to avoid responsibility for his or her actions.
Deindividuation Theory: the psychological state of deindividuation is aroused when individuals join crowds or large groups. The state is characterized by diminished awareness of self and individuality. Being in a large group provides a degree of anonymity, which allows an individual to avoid responsibility for his or her actions, thus shaking off the usual social controls and becoming more impulsive, irrational, aggressive, and even violent.
An example of this is Soccer (Football) violence: when supporters of one team attack those from the other side after the match. When they are in a crowd, people do things they would not normally do when alone.
Zimbardo (1969): Deindividuation Theory, Found that those whose identity had been obscured were more likely to deliver a harsher punishment. Deindividuation appears to lower a person’s sense of self-consciousness and sense of accountability for their behavior.
(+): Supports the Deindividuation Theory
(-): The study had a high level of artificiality in the procedure and they participants may have been subjected to undue stress.
Diener et al. (1976): Deindividuation Theory, Found that children who were deindividualized while trick or treating would take more candy than those who were individualized.
(+): Solved Zimbardo’s ecological validity issue was a naturalistic observation.
(-): The study involves children who were not briefed or had not given consent to participate.
Reicher (1987): argues that deindividuation increases an individual’s sense of group identy. Thus, the norms of the group become the guiding force of one’s behavior.
Johnson and Downing (1979): Deindividuation Theory, showed that when participants wore a Ku Klux Klan outfit, they were more likely to give stronger shocks than when they wearing a nurse’s outfit.
(+): Supports Reicher’s argument.
3. The social identity of the group provides indications as to what is and is not acceptable.
Oakes et al (1993): Self-Categorization Theory, suggests that people look for other individuals in the group with whom they can identify.
Reducing Violence: Teaching Social skills
Toch (1980): Those who lack social skills account for a high proportion of violence occurring in any given society.
(+): Schneider (1991): suggests that social-skills training can be effective in reducing the likelihood of a person becoming either the source or the target of aggressive behavior.
Aronson (1979): The use of the “jigsaw classroom”—also known as cooperative learning—lowers the rate of bullying in school and increases positive learning interaction between out-groups during play and free periods. Works on the idea that everyone has something to contribute to the learning process, and that by working together towards a common goal, everyone is valued.
(-): Limber (1992): argues that the jigsaw classroom and peer mediation may be appropriate in resolving conflict between students of equal power, but bullying is a form of victimization. It is not a “conflict”, it is a form of abuse, and it should be addressed as such.
(-): Many researchers argue that the only way to reduce bullying in schools is to take a “whole-school” approach.
Olweas (1972): developed a whole-school program for schools in Norway. Teachers where trained to recognize and deal with bullying; cooperative learning is used; head teachers ensure that lunchrooms and playgrounds are adequately supervised; and counselors conduct intensive therapy with the bullies and their parents. Teachers and administrators model non-aggressive conflict-resolution strategies in the classroom. (Social Learning Theory) Teachers are also present in the school during break-times; the mere presence of adults in the corridors and at lunchtime significantly lowers bullying. The program has reduced bullying by about 50%.
(+): Very effective, uses the individual cooperative learning along with many school wide programs to reduce bullying.
(+): Vreeman (2006): Whole-school interventions, involving teachers, administrators, and social workers committed to culture change, are the most effective, and are especially effective throughout high schools.
- Azthic Azthic Dec 5, 2010