Author(s): Konecni VJ
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Abstract The principal goal of the present research was to contrast the arousal-level and cognitive-labeling (anger) interpretations of aggressive behavior. In a 2 X 5 factorial between-subjects design, subjects were first either insulated or treated neutrally by a confederate. Four fifths of the subjects then received on each of 50 trials a 10-sec tone sequence while deciding whether or not to give an "electric shock" to the confederate. The stimulation was either simple (4.00 bits/tone) or complex (9.17 bits/tone) and was presented at either a comfortable (73-d.) or an aversively loud (97-db.) level. A group was assigned to each of the four stimulation treatments. The remaining subjects received no stimulation. In terms of the total number of shocks administered by subjects in different groups, the cognitive-labeling hypothesis was strongly supported. Both complexity and loudness had an effect, but only on insulted subjects. Other implications of the results were discussed.
This article was published in J Pers Soc Psychol
and referenced in Sociology and Criminology-Open Access