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W-2.-Theory, assessment, research and therapy of attitudes toward offense


W-1.-THE IMPACT OF COMMUNITY VIOLENCE ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF YOUNG CHILDREN: CURRENT RESEARCH AND METHODOLOGICAL ADVANCES

Organizer:

Linares, L. Oriana
New York University Child Study Center, New York, USA.

Exposure to community violence is a serious public health issue in the U.S.  In spite of the decline of serious violence crime in major US cities, children and mothers in poor inner-city neighborhoods across the nation are exposed to high levels of local violent episodes of chronic interpersonal violence, social disorder, and fear of crime.  The purposes of this workshop are:

  1. to critically review current research findings on the impact of community violence on the young child (PTSD symptomatology, anxiety and depression, aggression) and on the social world view from the child’s perspective;

  2. to review current assessment tools of trauma-related events and challenges of assessment for children during the preschool years;

  3. to present a new methodology of observing real life mother-child interactions of dyads exposed to high levels of community violence; and

  4. to discuss possible partnerships for cross-cultural research involving similar research goals and methodologies.


W-2.-Theory, assessment, research and therapy of attitudes toward offense

Organizers:

Pereyra, Mario
Departament of Psychology, River Plate Adventist University, Entre Ríos, Argentina.

Moreno, José Eduardo
Interdisciplinary Research Center of Experimental and Mathematical Psychology
National Research Council, Argentina.

Workshop Abstract

Aggression, interpersonal violence and prosocial behaviour are very important issues in contemporary society. When a person is offended, the aggression damages the relationship, bringing multiple harmful repercussions at a personal and social level, demand research efforts and the search for therapeutic strategies to reconstruct the interpersonal relations. In this workshop we present:

1) an Interpersonal Aggression Model (IAM) and some considerations in contrast to other models and theories;

2) an instrument to measure attitudes towards a person who is injured psychologically or physically in different situations -Attitude Scale Towards Offenders, ASTO-;

3) the results of psychometric validation, crosscultural and clinical research;

4) a psychotherapeutic intervention model for resolving disputes, oriented toward forgiveness and reconciliation.

W-2.1.-Research and Therapy of Attitudes Toward Offender

Pereyra, M.
Departament of Psychology, River Plate Adventist University, Entre Ríos, Argentina.

The issues I consider and the activities correspond to the following points:

1) Crosscultural research . I present investigations that we carry out with the purpose of evaluating the scales of the ASTO in different sociocultural context, in Argentina and foreign countries: a) inside the Argentina (n=1200), they were administered in Buenos Aires, Entre Ríos and other areas of this country. We study particularly, the variables: sex, age, systems of values and religious practice. We were found that there were significant differences in the ratings among the groups. The most significant result was the gravitation of the religious practice in prosocial and passive behaviors;  b) outside of the Argentina (n=728) we investigate undergraduate students in different countries: Ecuador (n=100), Brazil (n=450), Puerto Rico (n=81) and USA (n=97). We find that the versions in Portuguese and in English of the ASTO exhibited psychometric properties similar to the original version in Spanish. We discuss each population's profiles considering cultural variables.

 2) Clinical research. We carry out comparative studies of different clinical inpatient samples, with cancer (n=50), heart (n=50), chronic renal failure (n=59) and psychiatric with attempted suicide (n=50), contrasted with their respective control groups (n=209). The passive and aggressive behaviors showed significant differences according to the pathologies, as long as, the answers prosociales was more homogeneous, probably for mediation of the cultural factors. We make a brief presentation and discussion of some typical clinical cases.

3) Psychotherapeutic intervention model for resolving disputes. We expose an intervention model in cases of rupture of the relationship oriented toward forgiveness and reconciliation, based on the evangelical parable of the “prodigal son.” We identify different stages with their own problems in the process of repairing the damaged bond. We present some cases to illustrate and to discuss with the participants of the workshop, with the purpose of highlighting strategies and specific techniques of intervention

W-2.2.-Attitudes Toward Offenders: Theory and Scale Development.

Moreno, J.E.
Interdisciplinary Research Center of Experimental and Mathematical Psychology
National Research Council, Argentina.

1) Theory. I present a research review about aggressiveness, pasive response, forgiveness and reconciliation. Then I shall consider an Interpersonal Aggression Model (IAM) and prosocial behaviour. Benefit and harm in the psychology of interpersonal relations shall receive theoretical attention, specially forgiving as the forgoing of vengeful behaviour. The research review and the model are based on E. Fromm (1971), R. P. Fitzgibbons (1986), R. Enright (1994) and M. E. Mc Cullough (1998).

2) Scale Development. Aggresion, interpersonal violence and prosocial behaviour are very important issues in contemporary society that demand research efforts. In this workshop I present an instrument to measure attitudes towards offenders. The evaluation of these attitudes give us information to develop knowledge and techniques which might reduce harmfull aggresion and improve prosocial behaviour.

The ASTO (Attitude Scale Toward Offenders;Moreno, Pereyra, 1995) is an instrument composed of seven scales: forgiveness, demand, hostile reaction, revenge, resentment, negation and submission. The subjects must answer a series of items after reading ten brief vignettes that describe different situations in which a person is injured or offended. The results of a factor analysis (n=1200) revealed seven dimensions and confirmed the construct of ASTO (validity). Correlations with some scales of SIV (L. Gordon) and MMPI showed a satisfactory level of convergence validity. Reliability tests showed also a satisfactory level of ASTO scales  alfa de Cronbach, scales mean = .75). We must consider that each scale includes five different grievance situations.