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Discuss the Effects of Short Term Exposure to Violence
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DescriptionIB HL Psychology Human Relationships Effects of exposure to short term violence
Discuss the Effects of Short Term Exposure to Violence (22)
Violence is defined by the World Health Organisation as ‘the intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, against oneself, another person or against a group or community, that either results in or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, maldevelopment or deprivation’. There are many significant effects that result from short term exposure to violence which will be studied in relation to three violent behaviours; bullying, domestic violence and terrorism.
A study by Cahn (2006) found that 80% of children overhear violence between their parents, with a similar number observing it. It was also found in the same study that between 30 and 60% of those children were also suffering abuse at the hands of the violent parent. Cahn suggested that nine principle effects of this exposure to short term violence exist including such impacts as; increased levels of anxiety and depression, increased risk of suicide and development of learning difficulties, increased risk taking and an increased likeliness to respond to conflict aggressively. However, despite the large amount of evidence about behaviours linked to viewing violence it is difficult to infer cause and effect due to the Correlational nature of the collected data. Beyond this, it was also found by Cahn that some of the children studied did not show the expected behaviours but instead showed opposite tendencies to the violent ones demonstrated by their parents. This means that whilst there are reports of many negative behaviours resulting from the hearing or observing of domestic violence in the household, positive traits can also be born out of these experiences.
The effects of short term exposure to bullying as a form of violence differ from those put forward by Cahn in several ways. Elliot and Kirkpatrick (1999) surveyed thousands of students in the United Kingdom and found that 20% of those who had been bullied went on to attempt suicide, compared to a much-reduced rate of only 3% among non-bullied students. Due to the large sample size used in this study it can be said that an increase to the population validity occurs, thus adding credibility to the study. However, this is reliant on the assumption that the large number of participants will all have had similar reactions to bullying. A weakness of this study is that it was written before the phenomenon of cyber bullying had become so prevalent and so this subgenre of violence wasn’t specifically included. Therefore the findings must be carefully considered before being applied to current situations.
A second study into the effects of short term exposure to bullying was carried out by Olewus in 1992. In this study five ...
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