ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B

心理学报 ›› 2022, Vol. 54 ›› Issue (3): 270-280.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2022.00270

• 研究报告 • 上一篇    下一篇


刘宇平1, 周冰涛2, 杨波2()   

  1. 1中国政法大学刑事司法学院
    2中国政法大学社会学院, 北京 100088
  • 收稿日期:2021-03-26 出版日期:2022-03-25 发布日期:2022-01-25
  • 通讯作者: 杨波
  • 基金资助:

How does emotion shape aggressive behavior of violent offenders? An explanation based on emotion regulation theory

LIU Yuping1, ZHOU Bingtao2, YANG Bo2()   

  1. 1School of Criminal Justice, China University of Political Science and Law, Beijing 100088, China
    2School of Sociology, China University of Political Science and Law, Beijing 100088, China
  • Received:2021-03-26 Online:2022-03-25 Published:2022-01-25
  • Contact: YANG Bo


本文基于情绪调节理论, 以暴力犯为被试, 通过2项研究探究了情绪在攻击产生过程中的作用。研究1采用改编的反应时竞争范式测量个体攻击行为。结果发现, 情绪调节动机在负性情绪与攻击间起完全中介作用, 证实了负面情绪状态下, 暴力犯会为了调节情绪而实施攻击。研究2进一步表明, 攻击的确能起到调节情绪的作用。具体来说, 在暴力犯群体中, 实施反应性攻击之后, 会伴随着正性情绪的提升和负性情绪的下降; 实施主动性攻击之后, 个体的正性情绪和负性情绪都会提升。文章从对攻击结果的预期和攻击的实际效果两个角度, 对攻击的情绪调节理论进行了验证, 为情绪在攻击产生过程中的作用提出了新的解释。今后的研究和实践过程中, 应设法避免个体通过攻击调节情绪, 引导其使用合理的方式调节情绪以减少攻击行为的产生。

关键词: 情绪调节理论, 负性情绪, 正性情绪, 攻击, 暴力犯


Emotion is considered to be an important factor affecting aggressive behavior. According to emotion regulation theory, distressed people hope to improve their moods, and the motivation to use aggression to improve mood will increase aggressive behavior. In other words, the expectation of emotions is an important factor in the generation of aggressive behavior. Previous theories and studies mostly focused on the role of negative emotions such as anger in aggressive behavior. Recently, some researchers believe that positive affect plays an equally important role in aggression. Also, negative and positive affect are orthogonal, they should be studied separately. In addition, according to the purpose of aggression, it is often divided into premeditated/ proactive aggression and impulsive/reactive aggression, the mechanism between the two subtypes may exist differences. Finally, most of the previous studies used college students as participants, and the external validity is limited. The present study based on emotion regulation theory, selected violent offenders as participants to explore the role of negative/positive affect in proactive and reactive aggression with 2 studies.
In study 1, we recruited 88 violent offenders for a scenario-based experiment. Participants were randomly divided into a reactive aggression group (n = 46) and a proactive aggression group (n = 42) in the adapted reaction time competition paradigm (Taylor Aggression Paradigm). Participants finished the first stage to manipulate types of aggression. Participants were told to compete with another participant (a fake participant) in racing the speed of reactions. In the reactive aggression group, participants lost the game and received negative feedback from their rivals; in the proactive aggression group, participants won the game and received positive feedback from their rivals. Then, they completed the Positive Affect Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) and the questionnaire of emotion regulation motive. Finally, they finished the second stage in which they could send noises to their rivals, which can be considered as an aggressive indicator. Model 4 of Process in SPSS 23.0 was used to test the mediating role of emotion regulation motive between negative/positive affect and aggression. Participants finished PANAS after the second stage for study 2. Repeated measures ANOVA and regression analysis were used to test the change of emotion before and after aggression.
Study 1 showed that the motivation to improve mood played a mediating role between negative emotion and proactive/reactive aggression, but the effect was not significant for positive emotion. Study 2 showed that positive emotions would increase after proactive and reactive aggression; reactive aggression could reduce negative emotions, while proactive aggression could increase negative emotions.
The following conclusions can be obtained from the two experiments: (1) In a negative emotional state, violent offenders hope to improve their mood by conducting aggressive behavior. (2) Proactive and reactive aggression can increase the positive emotions of violent offenders, indicating that aggression can produce pleasure. (3) Reactive aggression can reduce negative emotions; proactive aggression can increase the negative emotions of violent criminals. The present study illustrates the relationship between emotion, especially positive emotion, and aggressive behavior in violent offenders. Aggression can produce pleasure, but it may also increase negative emotions, which in turn increases aggressive behavior, forming a feedback loop, which reflects the non-adaptive of aggressive behavior from the perspective of emotion. In practice, especially in prison, we should help individuals to learn a reasonable way to regulate their emotions, such as mindfulness.

Key words: emotion regulation theory, negative affect, positive affect, aggressive behavior, violent offenders