ERIC Number: ED235098
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Sep
Victimization at School and Attitudes toward Violence: A Longitudinal Analysis.
Bush, Diane Mitsch
A longitudinal study determined whether victimization increases students' fear and distrust and thus leads to greater approval of defensive violence. Data were obtained from a larger study conducted within the Milwaukee schools from 1974 to 1976. The present study utilized data on 221 respondents in grade 6 and on those same respondents when they were in grade 7. Attitudes toward violence were measured by a semantic differential scale; victimization was determined by asking respondents whether anything had been stolen from them and whether anyone had threatened them with violence or beat them up since they entered seventh grade. Criminal victimization had no impact upon the pattern of changes in children's attitudes toward violence from grade 6 to grade 7. Students became somewhat more positive toward defensive violence between the two grades. Victimization had a detrimental psychological effect upon the victim. The conclusion resulting from this study and from a review of relevant research is that adolescents' attitudes are not affected substantially by victimization because of the variety of cultural influences which produce relatively homogeneous attitudes toward violence, social factors which lead to the fear of crime for both victims and nonvictims, and the wide variety of factors (rather than discrete life events) that shape normative evaluations made by adolescents. (KC)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (77th, San Francisco, CA, September 6-10, 1982).