Social-demographic attitudes and violence

Fred E. Markowitz, Richard B. Felson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

80 Scopus citations


In this study, we examine the relationships among social-demographic characteristics, attitudes, and violence, drawing on cultural theories Structural equation modeling techniques are employed to examine data from a representative sample of the general population and a sample of ex-offenders. The findings indicate that age, gender, and SES are related to attitudes toward retribution and courage and to disputatiousness. Further, attitudes toward courage and retribution have significant effects on disputatiousness and violence, which explains a substantial portion of SES effects. The results suggest that lower-class persons are more likely to engage in violence to a large extent because they are more punitive and place greater emphasis on showing courage in conflicts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)117-138
Number of pages22
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1998

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Law


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