Aggressionoccurs in everyday life, it varies in degree and how people interpret it.
According to Bushman & Huesmann (2010) and Dewall, Anderson & Bushman (2012), aggression is abehaviour in which an individual intends to harm others, who doesn’t wish to beharmed and avoids harm themselves. Aggression can be exhibited through formssuch as; physical injury, hurt feelings or damaged social relationships (Krahé, 2013; Parrott & Giancola, 2007). Common components to aggression are that; it’san observable behaviour, it must be intentional, with the goal of harming,involves people and the recipient of it must want to avoid it (Allen & Anderson, 2017).This question refers to biological explanations of aggression, such as; evolutionary,genetic, and hormonal explanations. However, this essay will also cover social accounts,which include, Social Learning Theory (SLT), deindividualization and situationcues. Social psychologists don’t deny innate tendencies in aggression, but associety has changed over the years, they want to see how these tendencies areshaped and developed by our social environment. Thefirst biological approach this essay will discuss, is the evolutionary theory.
This refers to aggression as an adaptive value (Archer,2009; Buss & Shackelford, 1997; Bushman & Huesmann, 2010), in terms of survival and spreading genes to offspringand if threatened, humans could become aggressive to defend their femalepartners (Daly, Wilson, & Weghorst, 1982). Oneaspect of this is sexual jealously. It suggests males are more aggressive dueto fear of cuckoldry and higher parental uncertainty than females, as men wouldn’twant to invest all their resources in an offspring that isn’t theirs, due to nobeneficial gene spread. Therefore, increasingtheir aggression towards females and other rival males to prevent sexual infidelity,also known as retention strategy (Buss, 1988).This is supported by Daly & Wilson (1985),who found 58/214 murder cases were motivated by sexual jealously, suggestingmen have use aggression towards females, to reduce chances of cuckoldry. In addition,women are also known to be twice as likely to murder out of jealousy (Felson, 1984), for fear a man will invest his resourceselsewhere and will struggle to look after her offspring. An advantage is that,it can be used in real life application, for instance, use of retention tactics,can be an early indicator of aggression against partners. However, it is deterministic,as it suggests people have little or no control over their behaviour and itspurely down to biological factors, disregarding free will.
Indicating, aggression towards people as natural and inevitableand that males are victims of evolution. Furthermore, it doesn’t fulfil the criteriaof what constitutes a science (e.g.
falsifiability), due to this theorybeing developed over thousands of years, it couldn’t be tested empirically, thusjust speculative. Lastly, there are individual differences, as this theoryfails to explain why some men react differently in the same situations or whysome men adopt. Hence, suggest aggression isn’t universal and not entirelyevolutionary