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NCJ Number: 221116 Find in a Library
Title: When Its Good to be "Bad": Violence and Adolescent Peer Acceptance
Journal: Criminology  Volume:45  Issue:4  Dated:November 2007  Pages:893-924
Author(s): Derek A. Kreager
Date Published: November 2007
Page Count: 32
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article examines the relationship between adolescent violence and peer acceptance in school.
Abstract: Results suggest that violence generally holds a negative association with peer status, regardless of gender. Racial background does not condition the violence-peer status relationship. Socioeconomic status does moderate this relationship in macro level analyses of male status, but this effect is fairly modest. Males who perform poorly in school, irrespective of their sociodemographic backgrounds or school contexts, are more likely to gain status benefits from violence than are higher achieving peers. Findings also suggest that academically underachieving males may gain status benefits (or a least not be penalized) for fighting; for male adolescents detached from school, violence and disruptive behaviors may both gain peer respect, and simultaneously reject the authority of teachers and conventional adults. Moreover, because disadvantaged and minority males are less likely to be successful at school, they are at greater risk of turning to violence as a status attainment mechanism. The indirect effects of race and class on achievement and peer status may have important implications for the reproduction of social inequality. Female fighting seems to have fewer consequences for peer status in violent schools; female fighting is associated with fewer peer friendships. Female violence fails to enhance peer prestige. Future research should address as to whether individuals who gain status from violence have lowered educational and occupational outcomes, and whether these relationships vary by socio-demographic characteristics. The data analyzed were collected from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health), a school-based, nationally representative study of adolescents in grades 7 through 12 with a longitudinal component that extends into young adulthood; approximately 90,000 students received an in-school survey which included a 6 month followup in-home survey to a sample of 20,000 students. Tables, figures, references
Main Term(s): School influences on crime; School maladjustment; Schools; Sociological analyses; Violence
Index Term(s): Antisocial attitudes; Cultural influences; Economic influences; Peer assessment; Peer influences on behavior
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