chapter  2
32 Pages

North American Perspectives on Hostile Behaviors and Bullying at Work

ByLoraleigh Keashly, Karen Jagatic

When we fi rst began looking at persistently hostile and abusive behaviors at work in the early 1990s (what we called “emotional abuse”), the North American literature on aggressive behaviors at work had focused primarily on acts of physical aggression or violence (e.g., Fitzgerald, 1993), and there was little attention outside of the sexual harassment literature given to nonphysical forms of hostility, and even less exploring the enduring hostility that characterized abusive relationships at work. Indeed, in our own early research (Keashly et al., 1994, 1997), we looked for guidance to the domestic violence construct of emotional abuse and the workplace bullying and mobbing constructs that were being discussed in the

CONTENTS

Introduction ........................................................................................................... 41 The Labeling and Defi nitional Dilemma: Construct Profusion and

Confusion ......................................................................................................43 Chapter Overview .................................................................................................45 The Behavioral Domain: Actual Conduct ..........................................................46 Incidence of Hostile Workplace Behaviors ........................................................ 47 Discrete Event or Pattern: Hostile Relationships.............................................. 49

Repetition and Duration ............................................................................. 49 Patterning and Escalation ...........................................................................50

Intent (Harm by Design) ...................................................................................... 52 Power ......................................................................................................................54 Violation of Norms ................................................................................................ 57