Sex Roles

, Volume 40, Issue 9–10, pp 711–729 | Cite as

Why are Girls Less Physically Aggressive than Boys? Personality and Parenting Mediators of Physical Aggression

  • Gustavo Carlo
  • Marcela Raffaelli
  • Deborah J. Laible
  • Kathryn A. Meyer


The primary goal of the present analysis was todetermine whether the commonly observed genderdifference in physical aggression could be accounted forby gender differences in selected personality and social contextual factors. Eighty-nineadolescents (M age = 16.0; 52% female; 53%European-Americans, 38% Latinos)completed self-reportmeasures, including sympathy (empathic concern andperspective taking) and parental involvement (support andmonitoring). Mediation analyses revealed that relativelyhigh levels of both empathic concern and parentalmonitoring accounted for relatively low levels ofphysical aggression. In addition, sympathy (for males)and parental involvement (males and females) werenegatively related to physical aggression. Discussionfocused on theoretical and practical implications of these findings.


Gender Difference Social Psychology Contextual Factor Practical Implication Parental Involvement 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gustavo Carlo
  • Marcela Raffaelli
  • Deborah J. Laible
  • Kathryn A. Meyer

There are no affiliations available

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