Applying the attention-allocation model to the explanation of alcohol-related aggression: Implications for prevention

Peter R. Giancola, Robert A. Josephs, C. Nathan Dewall, Rachel L. Gunn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations

Abstract

The primary purpose of this article is to apply the attention-allocation model (AAM; Steele and Josephs, 1990) to the explanation, as well as the prevention, of alcohol-related violence. The AAM contends that alcohol has a "myopic" effect on attentional capacity that presumably facilitates aggression by narrowing attentional focus on the most salient provocative cues that are naturally present in hostile situations, rather than on less salient inhibitory cues. Data are presented to demonstrate support for the AAM with regard to alcohol-related aggression. The model has also been expanded to suggest some intermediary mechanisms that may account for how distracting attention away from provocative cues might be involved in the reduction of aggression. Finally, a number of practical suggestions are put forth regarding how the AAM can be applied to the prevention of intoxicated aggression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1263-1279
Number of pages17
JournalSubstance Use and Misuse
Volume44
Issue number9-10
DOIs
StatePublished - 2009

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by grant R01-AA-11691 from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Address correspondence to Peter R. Giancola, Ph.D., Department of Psychology, University of Kentucky, 115 Kastle Hall, Lexington, KY 40506-0044. E-mail: giancola.uky@gmail.com.

Keywords

  • Aggression
  • Alcohol
  • Attention
  • Prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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