By Russil Durrant

Crime is a subject that's of substantial curiosity to policy-makers, politicians and
the public alike. we wish to comprehend what elements can clarify the character and
prevalence of crime in society and use this data to higher strengthen ways for dealing with legal behaviour.

This e-book presents a finished review of ways to realizing crime and felony behaviour, with a spotlight on mental views. quite a lot of types of felony behaviour are thought of, together with juvenile crime, violent offending, sexual offending, collective violence and drug use. for every kind of offence a transparent evaluate of key conceptual and methodological matters is equipped, besides a close attention of the most important theoretical methods which were built. The ebook concludes via contemplating how our theoretical figuring out of crime can tell our responses to felony behaviour when it comes to punishment, prevention and rehabilitation.

Key positive factors of the ebook include:

• an in-depth assurance of a large diversity of alternative varieties of legal behaviour;

• inclusion of a various diversity of alternative theoretical perspectives;

• accessibly written, with vast use of case reviews, packing containers and activities;

• an intensive use of up to date references that spotlight the present nation of information within the box of legal psychology.

This e-book may be of curiosity to scholars, lecturers, researchers and practitioners with an curiosity in legal behaviour, and is very appropriate for undergraduate classes in legal psychology, forensic psychology and mental criminology.

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Extra info for An Introduction to Criminal Psychology

Example text

Vivid media reports of serial and mass murderers (see Chapter 5) certainly lend, on the face of it, credence to this view. Why else, it may be natural to think, would (or could) an individual start shooting others at random at a school or crowded public place, unless they were mentally disturbed? In order to address this question it will be important to establish just what we mean by a ‘mental disorder’ or ‘mental illness’, and what the available evidence indicates about the relationship between mental disorder and crime.

Indeed the idea that offenders are, in some sense, mentally ill or dysfunctional has a relatively long history in criminology. Vivid media reports of serial and mass murderers (see Chapter 5) certainly lend, on the face of it, credence to this view. Why else, it may be natural to think, would (or could) an individual start shooting others at random at a school or crowded public place, unless they were mentally disturbed? In order to address this question it will be important to establish just what we mean by a ‘mental disorder’ or ‘mental illness’, and what the available evidence indicates about the relationship between mental disorder and crime.

For Gottfredson and Hirschi (1990) the desire to engage in crime is a given as it reflects a general human tendency to seek immediate gratification. Whether or not individuals do actually engage in criminal behaviour is then dependent on their capacity for selfcontrol given the opportunities afforded by specific situations. Cognition Another important psychological approach to explaining criminal behaviour focuses on offender cognition. Cognitive approaches emphasise the importance of attending to the way that offenders think about themselves and the world.

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