chapter  4
24 Pages

Situational influences on aggression

This chapter focuses on situational influences on aggressive behaviour. It examines research about those aspects of a situation that trigger or exacerbate aggressive actions. The chapter explores the significance of aggression-related cues, that is, stimuli present in a given situation that direct the individual's attention towards aggression as a potential response. It looks at the role of alcohol in connection with aggressive behaviour. The chapter also examines evidence on the impact of temperature on aggression. It reviews evidence that seeks to identify the mechanisms involved in the alcohol-aggression link and to clarify the pathways through which alcohol affects aggressive tendencies. Alcohol-related expectancies can affect aggressive responding by providing actors with an excuse for behaving in an aggressive fashion. The presence of aggressive versus non-aggressive cues has been examined as a moderator of the effects of alcohol on aggression. The chapter concludes with a brief review of crowding, noise, and air pollution as environmental stressors relevant to aggressive behaviour.