We thank Gary Wong for his expertise in programming the learning task for the study and Lance Shotland for comments on a previous version of this manuscript. We thank Cheryl Graden and Kimberly Law for serving as experimenters. We also thank Heidi Chwyl, Tracey Dvorkin, Michael Gillingham, Cheryl Graden, Catherine Gray, Najma Jamaldin, Eun Ah Kim, Ron Morie, Elizabeth Panasiuk, Kulm Sangha, Sonia Sangha, Dave Sereda, Alex Soldat, Suzanne Tang, Sarah Wuest, and Yene Yoo for acting as confederales. Finally, we thank the University of Alberta, Department of Psychology Ethics Review Committee for their insights and suggestions. The research was supported by Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Grant 410 930122 to the first author. The research reported here was based on the second author's senior honors thesis conducted under the direction of the first author.
The Effect of Social-Comparison Feedback on Aggressive Responses to Erotic and Aggressive Films1
Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
Journal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume 25, Issue 9, pages 818–837, May 1995
How to Cite
Sinclair, R. C., Lee, T. and Johnson, T. E. (1995), The Effect of Social-Comparison Feedback on Aggressive Responses to Erotic and Aggressive Films. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 25: 818–837. doi: 10.1111/j.1559-1816.1995.tb01777.x
- Issue published online: 31 JUL 2006
- Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
A study assessed the effects of social-comparison cues and filmed violence on aggression toward women. Under the auspices of validating some film clips for use in future research, males viewed either erotic, violent sexual, or violent nonsexual films. A male confederate provided social comparison feedback by indicating (or not indicating) that the film degraded women. Self-reports of sexual arousal, affective responses to the films, perceptions of violence, perceptions of pornography, and perceptions of portrayal of women were measured. In a purportedly unrelated learning experiment, males were given the opportunity to aggress toward a female confederate through electric shock. Intensity and duration of shock were measured. Social comparison information caused reductions in self-reports of sexual arousal, affect, and increased perceptions of violence in the erotic film condition only. Social-comparison information caused males to rate the depiction of women as more negative in both the erotic and violent nonsexual conditions. Regardless of film type, social comparison information caused a reduction in perceived realism of the films. Only film condition affected perceptions of pornography, with greater sexual content judged as more pornographic. Social-comparison information reduced the intensity of shocks delivered. Finally, social-comparison information led to reduced duration of shock in all film conditions; however, this effect appeared to dissipate in the violent sexual condition. Implications are discussed.