Perception of family social climate and physical aggression in the home
Physical aggression between spouses is a serious social problem. This study was designed to determine if social climate is different in the homes where aggression occurs than in nonviolent homes. Students were asked to report whether physical aggression between spouses occurred in their homes during their last 2 years of high school. They were also asked to complete the Marlowe-Crowne Social Desirability Scale (MC-SDS) and the Family Environment Scale (FES). Each student protocol with reported conjugal violence was matched with another protocol with an identical score on the MC-SDS and on which physical aggression was not reported. A multivariate analysis of variance indicated that these two groups differed in their scores on the FES. A dominance hierarchy, openly expressed anger, conflict, and lack of organization were salient characteristics of homes where physical aggression occurred. Nonviolent families were characterized by spontaneous expression of feelings and problems, shared pleasurable activities and goals, and an emphasis on personal rights and freedoms. © 1986 Plenum Publishing Corporation.
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