Bullies and victims in rural African American youth: behavioral characteristics and social network placement



Bullying and victimization are serious problems for youth of many ages and from a variety of backgrounds. These behaviors have not, however, been widely studied in rural minorities. The current work examined behavioral and social correlates of bullying and victimization in a sample of rural African American youth. Incidence rates of bullying, victimization, and aggressive victimization parallel those in other populations. Bullies were rated as aggressive, hyperactive, and manipulative. Bullies and victims were both sociometrically rejected, but while victims were on the margin of the social network, bullies were integrated in their groups. Bullies' associations were heterogeneous: they belonged to both aggressive and non-aggressive and popular and unpopular groups. They also were highly likely to be leaders of their groups. Aggr. Behav. 33:1–15, 2007. © 2006 Wiley-Liss; Inc.