The Dark Side of Organizational Behavior

By Ricky W. Griffin; Anne M. O'Leary-Kelly | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 2
Workplace Aggression
and Violence

Insights from Basic Research

Robert A. Baron

Abstract: In a key sense, workplace aggression and violence can be
viewed as instances of human aggression occurring in work settings.
To the extent this is so, the findings of basic research on aggression
can provide important insights into the nature, causes, and reduc-
tion of workplace aggression and violence. This chapter is designed
to provide researchers with an overview of existing knowledge con-
cerning human aggression. An initial section considers definitional
issues (for example, the distinction between aggression and vio-
lence). Subsequent sections examine modern theories of human
aggression (as well as extensions of these to workplaces), ante-
cedents of aggression (personal, situational, and social factors that
play a role in the occurrence of such behavior). A final section con-
siders various techniques for reducing aggression and their applica-
bility in workplaces. Throughout the chapter, efforts are made to
explicate links between the findings of basic research on aggression
and current research on workplace aggression and violence.

The purpose of education is to keep a culture from being drowned
in senseless repetitions, each of which claims to offer a new insight.

—HAROLD ROSENBERG, 1972

Every time history repeats itself, the price goes up.

—ANONYMOUS

-23-

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