The effects of implicit and explicit self-control on self-reported aggression
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Aggression and violence have a large impact on society. Researchers have highlighted the need to incorporate impulsive processes into models of aggression. The current research is the first to investigate the role of self-control, measured by both explicit questionnaires and an implicit association test, on trait aggression. Results indicated that higher levels of implicit self-control were associated with lower levels of anger, and physical and verbal aggression, but not hostility while higher levels of explicit self-control were related to lower levels of all types of aggression. We also investigated the role of gender in the current study and showed that gender was associated with aggressive tendencies, such that males had higher levels of trait aggression on three out of four outcomes, and the relationship between explicit self-control and physical aggression differed according to gender whereby the relationship between these variables was stronger among males. The current findings provide the first indication that both implicit and explicit self-control have roles in aggressive tendencies.
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