Encyclopedia of Personality and Individual Differences

Living Edition
| Editors: Virgil Zeigler-Hill, Todd K. Shackelford

Frustration-Aggression Hypothesis

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-28099-8_816-1


The frustration-aggression hypothesis is one of the earliest aggression theories. It was first proposed by a group of Yale psychologists in 1939. The original theory made two bold claims: (1) aggression is always preceded by frustration, and (2) frustration always leads to aggression. The original theory has undergone two important revisions: one by Neal Miller in 1941, (Psychol Rev 48(4):337–342, 1941) and one by Leonard Berkowitz in 1989 (Psychol Bull 106(1):59, 1989). Although the 1939 and 1941 versions of the theory were controversial and heavily criticized, the 1989 version has been better received and is commonly used as a theoretical basis for modern aggression research.

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of CommunicationOhio State UniversityColumbusUSA
  2. 2.Ohio State UniversityColumbusUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Patrizia Velotti
    • 1
  1. 1.Sapienza University of RomeRomeItaly