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Bullying: Characterisation and the State of International Research

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Discriminatory Bullying


During the last years, the bullying issue has become an important multi-disciplinary phenomenon of study in the European Union, involving psychologists, sociologists, educationalists, paediatricians, statisticians and geographers. The interest for the study of bullying involves, on the one hand, the passionate printed articles that do not leave anyone indifferent, and increase interest in the area and, on the other hand, the progress achieved on the issue through European research starting with the work of Dan Olweus and eventually of other scholars.

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    It is recommended to read the research Tackling Bullying: Listening to the views of children and young people, of the Ministry of Education (

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    Please note that the disappearance of Sokin, in September 2004, a teenager from Hondarribia (Basque Countries), who committed suicide after being maltreated for a year by a group of students of his school, has helped to change the attitudes and awareness on the subject. This event provoked lively media interest. The Sokin case caused the increase in production of academic and literary publications on bullying, as well as an increase in discussion forums and conferences on this subject in Spain.

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    In Portugal, the educational system is divided into the sub-categories listed below (1) pre-school (for children from 3–5 years), (2) primary schools which includes elementary education for children aged 6–10 years, from the first to the fourth grades of study, the children in secondary schools in the fifth and sixth year of studies, and the college for adolescents from the seventh to ninth year of study), (3) High schools (for the students between the ages of 15 and 18 years, following the course from 10th to 12th year of study), and (4) higher education in universities and schools of higher learning.

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    Ekblad S., Olweus D. Applicability of Olweus’ aggression inventory in a sample of Chinese primary school children in “Aggressive Behaviour” 12/1986 (5):315–325. DOI:10.1002/1098-2337.

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    Cf The team was made up of Michael Gregory, professor of clinical psychology and psychopathology—University of Bordeaux 2, Patrick Berquin, professor at the university hospital of Amiens, head of paediatric neurology and coordinator of the Regional Centre for language and learning disorders, researcher in a group carrying out multimodal analysis of cerebral functions (EA 4293), Chairman of the French Paediatric Neurology Society Bernadette 3 Sabrina, clinical psychologist, 3 Eric Debarbieux, university teacher in the education science, Bordeaux 2, Director of the international observatory on violence in schools and Chairman of the General Assembly on safety in schools. Diane Purper-Ouakil, MD and psychopathologist and child psychiatrist, Carole Sailor, MD, paediatrician, physician, CHU Robert Debré, Paris and the associations SOS Benjamin. APEAS.

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    Villa S. Ignatius Foundation (2001), Survey on bullying in high schools in the Province of Trento, (the document is available on the site:

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Correspondence to Esoh Elamé .

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Elamé, E. (2013). Bullying: Characterisation and the State of International Research. In: Discriminatory Bullying. Springer, Milano.

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