How do friendship, indirect, and direct aggression relate?

Laura R. Green, Deborah R. Richardson, Tania Lago

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Most studies that report males as more aggressive than females have examined only direct aggression. However, recent research has shown that females may be more indirectly aggressive than males. Lagerspetz et al. [1988: Aggressive Behavior 14:403-414] have suggested that this gender difference in indirect aggression may arise because females have more dense networks than males, providing them with more opportunities for using indirect aggression. The present study examined the relationship between network density and aggression by administering self-report measures of each variable to 148 undergraduates. Males with high-density networks reported more indirect than direct aggression, and less direct aggression than males with low-density networks. Use of direct and indirect aggression by females was not related to network density. Explanations consider possible inhibitory and facilitating effects of network density.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-86
Number of pages6
JournalAggressive Behavior
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • Direct and indirect aggression
  • Gender differences
  • Social networks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)


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