Getting Angry at Peers: Associations with Liking of the Provocateur

Richard Fabes, Nancy Eisenberg, Melanie C. Smith, Bridget C. Murphy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Scopus citations


We examined how preschoolers coped with anger in interactions with well liked and not well liked peers. The free-play interactions of preschool-aged children (M age = 66.27 months) were observed for 6 months. The frequency, causes, and intensity of children's anger, as well as their anger-related reactions, were compared for incidents provoked by peers who were "really liked" to those provoked by peers who were liked only "a little bit." Although there were no differences in the intensity of anger provocations by well liked and not well liked provocateurs, children's responses to provocations by well liked peers were more controlled than was the case for anger provoked by peers who were not well liked. In general, boys were more responsive to how they felt about the provocateur than were girls. These findings suggest that anger episodes with well liked children were less stressful than those with peers who were not well liked.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)942-956
Number of pages15
JournalChild development
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1996


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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