Examining views of self in relation to views of others: Implications for research on aggression and self-esteem

Catherine P. Bradshaw, Cindy Hazan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The traditional view holds that aggressive individuals have unfavorable views of self (i.e., low self-esteem), but recent studies indicate that the opposite might be true (Baumeister, Smart, & Boden, 1996). This debate may be informed by considering how individuals view others. Following relational schema theory (Baldwin, 1992), which suggests that the combination of self and other views is particularly important in predicting behavior in social situations, we examined self- and other-esteem, view of self in relation to views of others, and different forms of aggression among 125 young adults. Views of both self and others were associated with covert aggression (anger and hostility), whereas only views of others were correlated with overt aggression (physical and verbal). We also explored the discrepancy between views of self and other and found participants with more favorable views of self than others, and those who had equally unfavorable views of both self and others to be most aggressive. Findings suggest that views of both self and other and the relation among these views should be considered in future research on aggression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1209-1218
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Research in Personality
Volume40
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2006

Keywords

  • Aggression
  • Schemas
  • Self-esteem
  • Social cognition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

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