Exploring the intention to react to aggressive action among Israeli adolescents

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The aim of the current study was to explore male and female adolescents' intentions to react to verbal and physical aggression issued by other males and females of the same age. The study is based on a sample of 292 male and female adolescents from 12 classes in four schools in northern Israel, two junior-high and two high-schools, 46.7% were males and 53.3% females. Sixteen short scenarios were presented to the interviewees, consisting of eight verbal provocations (four by males and four by females) and eight physical provocations. The results indicated that girls and boys perceived provocation differently. Males are more "gender oriented," whereas girls are more "content oriented," Males attend more to details of physical aggression, whereas females to details of verbal aggression. Yet, males are most concerned with the gender of the provocateur, whereas females are more attentive to the severity of the provocation, thus differentiating between verbal and physical forms of provocation, as representing different levels of attack, and within each form, differentiating along a continuum of severity of the attack. The results are discussed within the theoretical framework of reactive aggression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)507-524
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Research on Adolescence
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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