Aggression and Violence: A Social Psychological Perspective, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Aggression and Violence

A Social Psychological Perspective, 1st Edition

Edited by Brad J. Bushman


330 pages

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This book provides a broad and contemporary overview of aggression and violence by some of the most internationally renowned researchers in the field. It begins with an integrative theoretical understanding of aggression and shows how animal models shed light on human aggression and violence.

Individual risk factors for aggression and violence from different research perspectives are then examined. First, there is a cognitive neuroscientific, neuropsychological, and psychophysiological study of the brain. It then explores the developmental psychological factors in aggressive behavior, incorporating work on gender and the family. Other perspectives include the role of testosterone, individual differences, and whether humans are innately wired for violence.

The following sections moves from the individual to the contextual risk factors for aggression, including work on the effects of adverse events and ostracism, guns and other aggressive cues including violent media, and drugs and alcohol.

Targets of aggression and violence are covered in the next section, including violence against women and loved ones; aggression between social groups; and the two very contemporary issues of cyberbullying and terrorism.

The book concludes with work showing how we may make the world a more peaceful place by preventing and reducing aggression and violence.

The volume is essential reading for upper-level students and researchers of psychology and related disciplines interested in a rigorous and multi-perspective overview of work on aggression and violence.


Aggression is one of the grand puzzles of behavior that every society has to solve (and rarely solves to perfection). This book is a wonderful overview of both the classic wisdom and the latest findings on aggression. It provides a wealth of diverse perspectives, and may be the best edited book on aggression in many years. Anyone seeking to be brought up to date on these important phenomena should buy this book.

-Roy F. Baumeister, author of Evil: Inside Human Violence and Cruelty

Table of Contents

Part 1: Understanding the Roots of Aggression and Violence in Humans. An Integrative Theoretical Understanding of Aggression, L.R. Huesmann. Animal Models: Implications for Human Aggression and Violence, S. de Boer. Part 2: Individual Risk Factors for Aggression and Violence. The Aggressive Brain, B.D. Bartholow. Development of Aggression in Males and Females, J.E. Lansford. Family Influences on Aggression and Violence, M.H. Labella, A. Masten. Testosterone and Aggression, J. Archer, J. Carré. Individual Differences in Aggression: The Role of Dark Personalities, D.L. Paulhus, D.N. Jones. Appetitive Aggression, T. Elbert, J.K. Moran, M. Schauer. Part 3: Contextual Risk Factors for Aggression and Violence. Aversive Events and Aggression, C.L. Groves, C.A. Anderson. Ostracism and Aggression, E.D. Wesselmann, K.D. Williams. Gun Violence, W. Cukier, S.A. Eagen, G. Decat. Aggressive Cues: Weapons and Violent Media, B.J. Bushman. Alcohol and Other Drugs, D.J. Parrott, C. Eckhardt. Part 4: Targets of Aggression and Violence. Cyberbullying: A Critical Overview, D. Olweus. Violence Against Women, B. Krahé. Love and Hurt: Why We Aggress Against Loved Ones, C.N. DeWall, K.R. Lynch, C.M. Renzetti. Aggression Between Social Groups, J. Densley, J. Peterson. The Psychology of Terrorism, D. Webber, A.W. Kruglanski. Part 5: Making the World a More Peaceful Place. Preventing and Reducing Aggression and Violence, F. Anwar, D.P. Fry, I. Grigaityte. 

About the Editor

Brad J. Bushman (Ph.D. 1989, University of Missouri) is a Professor of Communication and Psychology at The Ohio State University, and a Professor of Communication Science at the VU University Amsterdam. He holds the Rinehart Chair of Mass Communication. For over 25 years he has studied the causes, consequences, and solutions to the problem of human aggression and violence.

About the Series

Frontiers of Social Psychology

Frontiers of Social Psychology is one of the field's most influential and distinguished book series. Each volume provides a rigorous and cutting-edge overview of the most recent theoretical, methodological, and practical developments in a substantive area of social psychology, in greater depth than is possible in general social psychology handbooks. Coverage includes major established topics and new and emerging areas. The Editors and contributors are all internationally renowned scholars, whose work is at the cutting-edge of research.

Scholarly, yet accessible, the volumes in the Frontiers series are an essential resource for senior undergraduates, postgraduates, researchers, and practitioners, and are suitable as textbooks in advanced courses in specific sub-areas of social psychology.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Social Psychology
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Criminology
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Violence in Society