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Examining the relationship between low empathy and bullying

By Darrick Jolliffe and David P. Farrington


This paper investigates the relationship between cognitive and affective empathy and bullying. A bullying questionnaire was completed by 376 males and 344 females aged about 15 in Hertfordshire. Low affective empathy was significantly related to bullying for females, but not for males. However, for both males and females low affective empathy was related to frequent vs. occasional bullying. Low total empathy was related to violent bullying by males and to indirect bullying by females. Cognitive empathy was not significantly related to any type of bullying by males or females

Year: 2006
DOI identifier: 10.1002/ab.20154
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