Informations and abstract
This study aims at investigating the problem of bullying in secondary school children, taking into account the personal and social experience of children involved in bullying events. Feelings, beliefs and behaviour during bullying, friendship relationships, loneliness and rejection experiences at school, sociometric status are particularly examined. The total sample consisted in 1025 eleven to fourteen years old children - 484 girls and 541 boys - attending five different secondary schools. Using an Italian version of Olweus' and Smith's questionnaire on bullying, children were distinguished according to their role in bullying (bully, victim, bully/victim, other). A sociometric questionnaire was also employed in order to assess subjects' status. The results revealed a social network supporting bullies, and the victims' and bully/victims' sense of loneliness and rejection. Moreover bullies and bully/victims appeared less sympathetic towards victims and supportive of intervention but more sympathetic towards bullies than others groups. Bully/victims had an ambiguous position. In fact they, as well as victims, suffered from social rejection, but, as well as bullies, have the same attitudes to bullying.