From columbine to virgínia tech: empirical based reflections about an expanding phenomenon

Timoteo Madaleno Vieira Francisco Dyonísio Cardoso Mendes Leonardo Conceição Guimarães About the authors

School shooting phenomenon has attracted attention throughout the world, especially after the Columbine massacre in April, 1999. In that event, 12 people died and about 30 were hurt. Some years later, in April 2007, Cho Seung-Hui carried out an even more impressive deed, shooting and killing 32 people at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, USA. This article presents school shooting as a growing phenomenon that may happen anywhere and not just in the United States. A reflection based on empirical research is presented focusing the development of school shooters in their social contexts, including home environment, media influence, and inter-students interactions in High Schools and universities.

Social environments; School violence; Bullying; Psychosocial development; School shooting

Curso de Pós-Graduação em Psicologia da Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul Rua Ramiro Barcelos, 2600 - sala 110, 90035-003 Porto Alegre RS - Brazil, Tel.: +55 51 3308-5691 - Porto Alegre - RS - Brazil