Male Competitive Intent leads to Aggression against Female Confederate after Social Stress
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Aggression is a primary behavior for all beings and has become a large part of social justice discussions today. A focal point of these discussions is male-perpetrated aggression, typically against females. Intersex aggression is less common than intrasex aggression and, therefore, deserves analysis so to better understand male-female aggressive encounters and their nuances. Several factors relate to how and when one decides to aggress which largely depend upon the situation. Furthermore, there are sex differences in aggression which can be derived from past and present gender norms that manifest in beliefs and behavior. The variation in the adoption of these norms present different constructs of masculinity, reflecting one’s culture and time period. Therefore, it is imperative to analyze current masculine identities as they relate to social justice issues present in today’s society. In the proposed study, female confederates provide either positive or negative feedback after after male participants undergo social stress tasks, then they engage in a competition against one another, and the participant’s level of competition is analyzed as a precursor to aggression. First, we hypothesize that participants will display higher levels of competitive intent and report more negative attributions to the confederate after receiving negative feedback than after receiving positive feedback. Second, we hypothesize that negative feedback from a female confederate will yield higher levels of competition and negative attributions from the participant as opposed to a male confederate. Results in accord with these hypotheses would imply males receive feedback from females more poorly than feedback from males and, consequently, they have a desire to compete against her more than him, providing insight about male-perpetrated aggression against females in the realm of social justice.