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Biology of Aggression$
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Randy J. Nelson

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195168761

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195168761.001.0001

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Stress and Aggressive Behaviors

Stress and Aggressive Behaviors

Chapter:
(p.275) 12 Stress and Aggressive Behaviors
Source:
Biology of Aggression
Author(s):

D. Caroline Blanchard

Robert J. Blanchard

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195168761.003.0012

This chapter considers the relationships of stress to offensive and defensive aggression. It argues that stress defined in terms of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis activity is relatively uninformative with reference to either the antecedents or the consequences of aggression. Stress defined in terms of threat is also insufficiently specific for understanding the two types of aggression. The incidence and specific elicitors of offensive aggression may be very different for mammalian species, depending on their social and physical environments. The prevalence of defensive threat/attack and their position in the defense pattern also change systematically with group social structure, environmental constraints, and the size and defensive capabilities of the animal relative to major predators for each species.

Keywords:   offensive aggression, defensive aggression, stress response, stress hormone, mammals

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