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Kelton Sweet January 9th, 2005 11:12 AM

"signs of damage"
My first post...Hello!

I'm a behavior analyst. I'd like to get opinions on an issue relating to aggression:

It is sometimes said that some behaviors may be reinforced by "signs of damage" (broken objects, broken skin, cries, etc.).

I think that it is clear enough that many of these sorts of consequences are conditioned reinforcers. It is probably also true that these types of consequences serve to reinforce aggressive behavior. However, is there any information about the extent to which this sort of reinforcer may be unconditioned in some cases?...that there is a genetic basis for the reinforcing value of these "signs of damage"?

"Signs of damage", then, could be included in the list of primary (unconditioned) reinforcers in some cases?

As I recall, aggressive behavior can be elicited in lab animals and I assume "signs of damage" have not been the subject of a conditioning process with the animal.

If there are people with a biological condition which sets these "signs" to act as reinforcers, are there psychiatric treatments which can directly impact this sort of condition?

The vast majority of my clients are referred to me due to some sort of penchant for aggression, in a few rare cases, there appears to be a genetic basis for the aggression which occurs due entirely to the reinforcing value of these "signs".

Comments on any aspect of this post are appreciated!

KounselorK April 7th, 2005 03:38 PM

Re: "signs of damage"
The majority of my work is with aggression (in the form of violence to others or depression and self-destructive behavior). If I were to classify the "signs of damage" from client's in my practice, I would have to say that they are conditioned responses or are random until one is reinforced.

onimagus June 1st, 2006 08:10 AM

Re: "signs of damage"
Aggression hapens when lack of confidence takes place in the person's mind..itz the outburst of compressed emotions..I guess that's why it takes place. I did sociology at school, and there are so many definitions of it,mostly in deviance behaviour section..

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