Heiligt het doel de middelen? De rol van pesten als strategie naast prosociale en coërcieve strategieën bij het bereiken van sociale dominantie
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From previous research it is known that prosocial and coercive strategy use as well as bullying are related to social dominance. However, it remains unclear whether bullying could be seen a coercive strategy or not. The present study investigates whether bullying is a strategy that, in addition to prosocial and coercive strategy use, contributes to predicting social dominance in terms of resource control and perceived popularity. The moderating role of gender was also examined. Data were obtained from the second wave of a longitudinal study about bullying from the ‘Dutch Consortium on Bullying’ (DCOB). Most of the 2.414 students examined (43.6% boys) were aged 12.8 to 13.1 years old (M=13.3, SD=7.1). Peer nominations were used to assess bullying, prosocial and coercive strategy use, resource control and perceived popularity. Relations between the variables has been analyzed by a hierarchical multiple regression analysis. As hypothesized bullying was responsible for a significant part of variance in resource control and perceived popularity in addition to prosocial and coercive strategy use. Prosocial and coercive strategy use and bullying lead to social dominance together and independently of each other. Gender only moderated the relationship between prosocial strategy use and resource control and bullying and resource control. A strong connection was found between coercive strategy use and bullying and these strategies were prominent predictors of social dominance, but bullying appeared to be a separate aggressive strategy. Recommended is to involve the social context in anti-bullying programs and to differentiate between coercive strategy use and bullying.