Outline and Evaluate One Explanation for Institutional Aggression

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"Outline and evaluate one explanation for institutional aggression" Aggression refers to angry or threatening behaviour that is intended to cause harm or pain psychologically or physically. Institutional aggression occurs within institutions such as in prisons or within social groups. The deprivation model argues that prisoner or patient aggression is due to individuals being exposed to stressful and oppressive conditions within the institution; that aggression is due to the exposure of a stressful environment. Stressful conditions can include overcrowding, which is seen to increase fear and frustration levels, leading to aggressive behaviour. Sykes argues that institutional aggression is a result of the environment, and that it is occurs within prison institutions because they experience deprivation on a daily basis. These include deprivation of liberty, where the prisoners are deprived of their freedom, deprivation of autonomy, where the prisoners are deprived of their independence by constantly being controlled by officers and loss of security, where many of the prisoners feel insecure of themselves. This is then supported by Sykes who found that the potential threat to personal security increased the anxiety levels in inmates, even if the majority of prisoners were not a threat to them. However, inmates may cope with these struggles in a number of ways, including some prisoners isolating themselves in their cells, whereas others choose to rebel by being violent towards staff. A study supporting the deprivation model was carried out by McCorkle et al who found that overcrowding, lack of privacy and lack of meaningful activities leads to peer violence which shows that the environment and place, could be a significant factor influencing aggression within prisoners. However, one problem with research into institutional aggression is gender bias. Most of

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