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OP-7. ROLE OF PARENTS IN THE AGGRESSION OF THEIR CHILDREN

OP-7.1.-PARENTING PRACTICES, SELF-CONTROL AND ADOLESCENT DELINQUENCY

den Exter Blokland, E.A.W., Engels, R.C.M.E. and Finkenauer, C.
Department of Child and Adolescent Studies, Utrecht University, The Netherlands

Adolescence is a critical developmental period that predestines adult well-being and functioning and that is characterized by an upsurge in delinquent behavior. Implicitly blaming the parents, this increase in delinquency has been attributed to parenting practices characterized by low levels of support and control. The question arises, however, whether parental directly affect adolescent delinquency. Recent studies have shown that young people who are not able to control their impulses and emotions are more likely to engage in delinquent and violent behavior. Furthermore, adolescent self-control may be affected by the way they are raised by their parents. In sum, the present study tested a model in which parenting practices affect adolescent delinquency indirectly through the mediating influence of adolescent self-control. Self-report questionnaires were administered among 326 13-17- year old boys and girls, assessing (1) parenting practices, such as monitoring, affection expression and use of disciplinary methods, (2) self control, and (3) delinquency (e.g., petty crime, aggressive acts). High correlations between self-control and delinquency were found (r's between .40 and .51, p < .001). Furthermore, parenting practices explained about 20% of the variance in adolescent self-control. Hierarchical regression analyses confirmed that self-control mediates the link between parenting practices and delinquency. Additionally, direct but small effects of some parenting practices on delinquency emerged. Moreover, mothers' parenting practices contributed more strongly to adolescent self-control and delinquency than fathers' parenting practices. These findings underline the crucial role of self-control in adolescent delinquency. Parents are to be blamed but the question is for what. Implications for research and prevention are discussed. 

OP-7.2.-MEDIATION OF PARENTAL SOCIALISING PRACTICES IN THE RELATION BETWEEN EARLY AGGRESSIVE TV VIEWING AND AGGRESSIVE BEHAVIOUR IN ADULTHOOD

Lubanska, D.  and Fraczek*, A. S.
Graduate School for Social Research, Polish Academy of Sciences; Department of Education, Warsaw University. *Department of Education, Warsaw University; Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology, MHSW, Warsaw, Poland.

To investigate the long-term effects of childhood exposure to television violence, follow-up data were collected in the early 1990s on a sample of 106 Polish youth in their early 20s, who had previously been tested and interviewed when children three times between years 1979 and 1981 (Huesmann & Eron, 1986). In accord with recent cognitive modifications of social learning theory (Bandura, 1986) and results of the parallel American study (Huesmann & Moise, 1998), our hypothesis is that early childhood aggressive TV viewing exerts long-term effect on behaviour of its viewers. The multiple regression analyses and structural modelling techniques of the follow-up data revealed that contrary to the US sample frequent childhood exposure to television violence does not predict young adult aggressive behaviour, independently of gender, SES or IQ. The lack of such relationship was pointed out so far only by a few researchers (Milavsky et al., 1982; Sheehan, 1986; Wiegman et al., 1992). It is further hypothesised that aggressive behaviour and its mechanisms result primarily from deficiency in socialisation processes, with important role played by inappropriate parental socialising practices (Fraczek, 1993). They are seen not only as influential of social behaviour but also as mediators of the relation between childhood exposure to TV violence and interpersonal aggression. Correlation and regression analyses show differences between the groups distinguished on the basis of the influence: a few influenced were more often  rejected, punished by parents and certain kinds of their behaviours were reinforced. A constellation of these practices is found to predict their interpersonal aggression in adulthood. The mediating effects of the practices in the relationship between early aggressive TV viewing and level of interpersonal aggression in adulthood are confirmed with structural modelling analyses. The knowledge acquired from this research is exploratory for the Polish population and shows that in spite of general lack of longitudinal effects of early aggression viewing on aggressive interpersonal behaviour in adulthood, in a few influenced, a constellation of certain parental socialising practices could be seen as mediator of the effects.