The role of respect in the relation of aggression to popularity


Can aggressive children be popular with peers? Generally, sociometric popularity (liking nominations) has been shown to be negatively associated with aggression, and perceived popularity (popularity nominations) has been shown to be positively associated with aggression. The thesis of the present research was that being respected by peers moderates the relation between aggression and popularity. For both third- through sixth-grade boys (N = 107) and girls (N = 117), perceived popularity by peers was positively associated with nominations for aggression (both overt and relational) only for children high in respect. Aggression was negatively associated with sociometric popularity for girls who were low in respect; sociometric popularity for girls high in respect was not related to aggression nominations. In sum, aggressive children were considered to be popular only if they were respected; aggressive girls were not disliked if they were respected. © Blackwell Publishing Ltd. 2011.

Publication Title

Social Development