Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal

, Volume 24, Issue 4, pp 353–368 | Cite as

“Sugar and Spice But Not Always Nice”: Gender Socialization and its Impact on Development and Maintenance of Aggression in Adolescent Girls

  • Joan LetendreEmail author


Aggression in girls is a problem that is gaining increased attention. The indirect forms of relational aggression historically used by girls to harm their victims are increasingly escalating into physical altercations. An understanding of the interplay between the developmental and contextual factors that contribute to learned aggression in girls is needed to inform program development that truly responds to the unique gender socialization of girls. This article examines parental, environmental, and peer factors for their contributions to the development of girls’ aggression. Implications for program development that teaches girls and their families alternative ways of expressing their needs and protecting themselves from harm is discussed.


Agrression in girls Conflict resolution Gender specific interventions Socialization of girls 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social WorkUniversity of ConnecticutWest HartfordUSA

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