Predictors of Adolescents’ Antisocial Behavior in Southeastern Nigeria: Exposure to Armed Conflict and Physical Punishment at Home
Keywords:Adolescence, armed conflict, physical punishment, antisocial behavior, Fulani herdsmen, mediation analysis, Igbo, Nigeria
Despite extensive studies on the relationship between armed conflict and behavioral problems among adolescents, the micro-level mechanisms through which the former influences the latter are not well understood. The current study examines the relationship between exposure to the Fulani herdsmen attacks among Igbo adolescents in Southeastern Nigeria and antisocial behavior. Using a mediation analysis, it was examined whether physical punishment mediated the relationship. A sample of 385 secondary school students (227 girls, 157 boys; Mage = 16.3; SD = 1.35) completed a questionnaire during class. It was found that exposure to the Fulani herdsmen attacks predicted antisocial behavior among the adolescents, and the effect was weakly mediated by the experiences of physical punishment at home. The findings suggest that living in an environment of armed conflict may lead to increased levels of antisocial behavior in adolescents.
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