Perceptions and Functions of Play and Real Fighting in Early Adolescence
Article first published online: 12 SEP 2003
Volume 74, Issue 5, pages 1522–1533, October 2003
How to Cite
Pellegrini, A. D. (2003), Perceptions and Functions of Play and Real Fighting in Early Adolescence. Child Development, 74: 1522–1533. doi: 10.1111/1467-8624.00620
- Issue published online: 12 SEP 2003
- Article first published online: 12 SEP 2003
The hypothesis is tested that adolescent boys' (mean age of 12.8 years) intrasexual rough-and-tumble play (R&T) is used for dominance and intersexual R&T is used to establish heterosexual relationships. In Study 1, boys' observed R&T was related to both dominance and aggression. In the first half of the school year, R&T occurred primarily between males, possibly to establish dominance. In the second half of the year, both boys and girls engaged in R&T, possibly to establish heterosexual relationships. Counter to the hypothesis, observed aggression increased across the year. In Study 2, youngsters viewed taped R&T bouts in which they were participants or nonparticipants. Participant, more than nonparticipant, males saw R&T as related to dominance whereas participant, more than nonparticipant, females saw it as playful.