The effect of constant threat of terror on Israeli Jewish and Arab adolescents

Miri Cohen, Jawdat Eid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The effect on Israeli Jewish and Arab adolescents of living under constant threat of terrorist attacks was assessed in a sample of 346 adolescents. The study probed their direct and indirect exposure to terrorist attacks, avoidance of public centers, sharing feelings with significant others, and stress reaction symptoms. The adolescents showed mild to low levels of stress symptoms in reaction to terrorist attacks in Israel, with no significant differences between Jews and Arabs. The Jewish adolescents reported knowing more people involved in terror attacks and being more informed by their parents about them. Demographic and exposure variables explained 39% of the variance of stress reaction symptoms. Being female, knowing someone injured, having parents who discuss terrorist attacks or forbid going out, and more sharing of feelings were significantly related to higher stress symptoms. For Jewish adolescents, greater levels of sharing of feelings were related to higher distress. Jewish and Arab adolescents proved to be similarly affected by the threat of terror but were also resilient even in highly unusual circumstances.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-60
Number of pages14
JournalAnxiety, Stress and Coping
Volume20
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2007

Keywords

  • Exposure
  • Jewish and Arab adolescents
  • Shared feelings
  • Stress reaction symptoms
  • Terrorist attacks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

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