نقش شخصیت و اسناد سرزنش در تجارب زندانیان از خشم
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|33265||2003||13 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||5800 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Personality and Individual Differences, Volume 34, Issue 8, June 2003, Pages 1453–1465
The emotion of anger has gained researchers' interest in recent years [Novaco (1994) In: J. Monahan & M. J. Steadman (Eds.), Violence and mental disorder: developments in risk assessment. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press; (1997) Legal and Criminological Psychology, 2, 77]. However, it is still unclear what influences the expression of anger. The current study investigated the relationship between anger, personality and blame attribution in Icelandic prisoners. Sixty-nine male offenders completed the Gudjonsson Blame Attribution Inventory, the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire and the Novaco Anger Scale. No differences were found in the anger levels of violent/non-violent offenders. Results indicated that recidivism, psychoticism and neuroticism were predictive of anger levels, but no relationship was found between blame attribution and anger. The findings of this study suggest that in terms of anger management programmes in prison, it might be advantageous to target repeat offenders and take into account personality factors that seem to influence anger.
The examination of anger is a growing area of research (Novaco, 1997, Novaco, 1998 and Towl and Crighton, 1996); consequently the identification of factors that facilitate it is in its early stages. It has been suggested that variables such as personality and blame attribution may influence the experience of anger and possibly the implementations of anger management programmes (McFatter, 1998 and et al., 1996). In order to identify prisoners most in need of anger management programmes, the aim of the current study was to explore the relationship between anger, personality and blame attribution in prisoners held in the Icelandic prison system where, to date, no group work has been introduced. Anger can be defined as a response to an aversive state consisting of both cognitive and physiological components (Novaco, 1997). It is a normal and often functional response to negative situations, protecting self-esteem, instigating action, energising and defending individuals against psychological or physical harm (Towl & Crighton, 1996). Alternatively, anger can be destructive, physically and mentally harmful and can lead to the onset of various problems such as depression and cardiovascular complications (Stein et al., 1993 and Novaco, 1994). Novaco's (1978) model of anger suggests the emotional expression of anger is an interaction between external events, cognitive arousal and behavioural factors. Novaco's (1978) theory indicates that it is individual interpretations of aversive situations through personal scripts and schemas that mediate the transformation of information into behavioural actions. In particular, if a situation is perceived as negative or threatening to the individual's self-image then it becomes likely that anger will result (Novaco, 1978 and Novaco, 1997). Anger only becomes problematic when its expression becomes a frequent, inappropriate and/or disproportionate reaction to events (McDougall et al., 1991, Novaco and Chemtob, 1998 and Towl and Crighton, 1996). It has been proposed that aggression is often a consequence of anger arousal (Cooke, Baldwin, & Howison, 1990) and many studies indicate anger as a significant predictor of aggression (Buss and Perry, 1992, Novaco, 1997 and Novaco, 1998). Both anger (Baron & Hartnagel, 1997) and aggression (Eysenck & Gudjonsson, 1989) have been shown to predict offending behaviour. Although anger may not always lead to aggressive behaviour, studies on populations with high anger levels show that aggressive behaviour is a frequent outcome of anger arousal (Chemtob et al., 1997 and Watt and Howells, 1999) and elevated anger levels, coupled with aggressive behaviour, are often observed in forensic patients, offenders and post-traumatic stress syndrome patients (Chemtob et al., 1997 and Watt and Howells, 1999). As anger can predict aggression, which in turn, may result in offending behaviour, anger management programmes have been introduced in prisons throughout Europe and the USA (Hollenhurst, 1998). The objective of these programmes is not to eradicate anger, but rather to regulate it by challenging maladaptive and irrational beliefs relating to the function and nature of anger (Howells, Watt, Hall, & Baldwin, 1997). Other aims include a heightened awareness of the negative outcomes that anger can have and the development of the ability to regulate anger experiences (HM Prison Service, 1995). The underlying principle of anger management programmes is that if offenders learn how to control their anger, this may lead to a reduction in aggressive behaviour (Dowden, Blanchette, & Serin, 1999) and consequently a reduction in further offending (Feindler & Ecton, 1986). Obviously not all offenders have problems controlling their anger (Howells, 1993). Deciding which offenders would benefit from anger control programmes may logically lead to the selection of offenders incarcerated for violent rather than non-violent crimes. Hence, research indicates that most anger control programmes in prisons focus on violent offenders (Dowden et al., 1999). Although selecting participants for anger management programmes on the basis of violent or non-violent crimes seems rational, to date there is little research suggesting that violent and non-violent offenders differ in terms of anger and/or levels of aggression. Accordingly, there is no real evidence suggesting that only offenders with histories of violence are in need of anger management. Indeed, it could be argued that other groups of offenders would benefit from inclusion in Anger Management programmes. Research notes how people will differ in their reaction to the emotional experience of anger (e.g. Averill, 1980) and so it seems feasible that offences other than those involving violence may also result from feelings of anger; a possibility that seems to be neglected by much of the literature. However, if those in need of anger management cannot be identified solely on history of violence, then alternative forms of identification must be considered. Some research has noted how younger offenders more frequently display aggressive behaviour as a result of anger than do older offenders (Dangel, Deschner, & Rasp, 1989) and age has been considered to be a mediating factor in the expression of anger as aggressive behaviour (Dowden et al., 1999). Consequently, it is possible that younger offenders are in greater need of anger management programmes than are older offenders. Similarly, personality factors are thought to play some part in the individual differences noted in intensity, expression and duration of emotions (McFatter, 1998) and yet the role personality factors play in the experience and expression of anger seem to have been largely neglected. This is surprising when research indicates that personality traits are relatively stable characteristics that can guide (Hall, Lindzey, & Campbell, 1998) and explain (Pervin, 1993) behaviour. Although the relationship between anger and personality has been neglected, a considerable amount of research has been conducted on personality factors and crime (Eysenck, 1987, Eysenck and Gudjonsson, 1989 and Kruger et al., 1994). However, results so far have been inconclusive. For instance, some research indicates that offenders score higher on psychoticism (P), extraversion (E) and neuroticism (N) than non-offenders (Eysenck, 1977), whereas other studies note different relationships between personality and crime (Eysenck, 1987 and Eysenck, 1996). One reason for this ambiguity is thought to be due to the heterogeneity of offenders (Howells et al., 1997) which makes it unlikely that personality factors will be of any real use in predicting offending behaviour overall. However, personality variables may be more useful in predicting specific variables associated with offending behaviour, for example anger levels. Although Eysenck's (1977) theory of personality makes no direct reference to anger and its ties to personality or criminality, aggression is considered to be a trait on the psychoticism factor (Eysenck, 1977 and Eysenck and Gudjonsson, 1989). It might then be expected that anger too will relate to psychoticism. Similarly, Eysenck does not directly refer to the relationship between neuroticism and anger, but depression, irrationality and anxiety, all traits associated with neuroticism, have also been linked to anger (Lemerise & Dodge, 1993). As a result, it is possible that personality factors may help identify prisoners in need of anger management. A further factor that might play a role in anger arousal is blame attribution (Feindler & Ecton, 1986). According to Heider's (1958) theory of attribution, people have a tendency to attribute their own and others' behaviour either to personal dispositions (internal properties) (Gudjonsson and Petursson, 1991 and Loza and Clements, 1991) or to social and environmental factors (external forces) surrounding a given act (Fazio, Kroner, & Forth, 1997). The antecedents of blame and anger are considered to be similar, with both including attributions about intent, controllability and justification of an act (Rule and Ferguson, 1984, Weiner, 1995 and et al., 1996 found that anger and blame attribution have a bi-directional effect on each other. As anger may result from circumstances where people feel that they have been unjustly provoked or violated (Martin & Wan, 1999) it seems likely that angry individuals may believe someone else is responsible for a negative event. The Gudjonsson Blame Attribution Inventory (BAI) (Gudjonsson & Singh, 1989) assesses three domains of blame attribution: external, mental element and guilt. External attribution on the BAI follows Heider's (1958) theory of attribution to external factors. The external dimension of the BAI includes statements such as “I did not deserve to get caught for this act” and “I should not blame myself for the act”. Mental element is designed to measure the degree to which a person attributes the blame of their action to personal internal factors such as mental illness or perceived loss of control, for instance, “I had no control over my actions” and “I was very depressed when I committed the act”. Guilt attribution on the BAI is a measurement of remorse regarding criminal behaviour, and includes assertions such as, “I feel a constant need to punish myself” and “I will never be able to forgive myself for what I have done”. Studies using the BAI with offender populations reveal that different types of offenders tend to use different attribution styles to explain their criminal behaviour (Gudjonsson and Bownes, 1992 and Gudjonsson and Petursson, 1991). For instance, Gudjonsson and Bownes (1992) note how sex offenders have higher levels of guilt and lower external attribution on the BAI. In addition, Gudjonsson and Petursson's (1991) study on Icelandic offenders found that violent offenders had higher scores on the external and mental element attribution of the BAI than other offenders, a result which supported Gudjonsson and Singh's (1989) earlier study of British offenders. Blame attribution has also been linked to personality traits associated with criminality (Shine, 1997) and a positive correlation between external blame attribution and psychoticism has been identified (Gudjonsson, 1999, Peersen et al., 2000 and Shine, 1997). It is therefore feasible that both blame attribution and personality factors may play a part in the manifestation and expression of anger. Clearly, the issues surrounding anger, blame attribution and personality need further clarification. Consequently, it was the aim of the current study to examine the role of personality variables and blame attribution in the experience of anger among Icelandic prisoners. It was predicted that: 1. Violent offenders would have higher anger scores than non-violent offenders. 2. Younger offenders would report higher levels of anger than older offenders. 3. Violent offenders would score higher on measures of neuroticism and psychoticism than non-violent offenders 4. Violent offenders would attribute blame to external sources and mental elements more than non-violent offenders.