“Where there’s one,
you’re bound to divide it”
Now that I have your attention – This is a Catalyst Transmission
Have a Look at the Way Things Are…
Throughout cross-cultural/trans-cultural history people continue to display the same behavioral patterns. Current cultural paradigms were once spawned from inhumane tendencies.
Social psychology doesn’t change often or quickly.
Age worn group dynamics remain consistent –
…and the human species remains resistant to change.
Several ideas have surfaced in social research focused on group aggression. A common theme, coined as “chosenness,” (yes, spelled with two n’s) is a fundamental aspect of group-based aggression (Eidelson & Eidelson, 2003). “Chosenness” reflects a hierarchy dynamic, posturing its members as superior to others. Typically, such a group is united by assigning itself a task. This conviction provides a feeling of cohesion and kinship within the group. Positioning itself against outsiders, the group tends to form a justified grievance in regard to another group or type of person. Naturally, this can quickly spur negative ramifications. Violence or war is a reliable repercussion. In example – certain member(s) may perceive an external threat and legitimize aggression in the name of defense. Needless to say, the situation can quickly become hazardous. Offensive violent proceedings are often justified, first, as preventative measures.
At times, aggression is viewed as the only option by the group and violence is a common symptom. Groups of this nature are polarized by a perceived motivational stimulus. A hierarchical group model could have one to possibly several figureheads, or, leaders. Gangs, and other aggressive allegiances may be based on a peer structure. The group may have a loose hierarchical system, or operate without a figure head at all. Positive leadership serves as a prevention in group aggression, but little else has proven effective.
The Social Learning Theory of Aggression is based on the premise that violent groups sustain a correlative relationship to first observing another assault-based model; thus – reinforcing any prior violent leanings. Therefore, the behavior is not necessarily inherent – rather, it is learned. Social influence easily takes root in early childhood development. (Bandura, 1973). Higher rates of propensity toward violence have been identified in sub-cultural frameworks that condone and/or reward competitive members. Social scientist and Social Learning Theory of Aggression advocate, Albert Bandura, identified other violent cultural models portrayed in the media (television, video games, movies, sports…etc.), family, and sub-cultures as a key influence in perpetuating violent behavior.
Prejudice and Discrimination are either products of the group or found pre-existing in cultural models. Prejudice targets race, creed, political ideology, religion among other cultural schemas based on counter identities or beliefs. Discrimination extends from behavior, acting on prejudices. It is comprised of similar methodology and roots.
Realistic Conflict Theory provides a historical description leading to the roots of prejudice and discrimination. This model is competition based and reflects the primal nature of men. In example, this conflict is theorized to have been the cultural landscape during the co-existence of Neanderthal and Homo-sapien. Resources were jealously guarded and the competition was so extreme that it led to the extinction of Neanderthal. Later on, this group dynamic was evident among American natives and European settlers. The natives were almost exterminated as well.
Prejudice may also arise from the natural segregation societies use to divide up the world into distinct social categories. This is the derivative of the primary violent group models, as it creates the “us versus them” paradigm. The newly adopted mentality results in a binary effect. The “in-group” is the aggressor. The “out-group” is defined by the in-group.
The Social Cognitive Theory suggests that aggressive attitudes and a propensity toward violence is a trait adopted just as easily as any other social behavior and/or attitude. Social cognition is the process through which social information is adapted to mental processes. A familiar social cognition is “stereotyping.” A stereotype represents broadly shared views (atypically negative) about another group, subculture, race, or class.
I assume the writing is on the proverbial wall. Think of the social groups in our media today.
Do the math.
“Monkey killing monkey killing monkey
over pieces of the ground.”