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Psychological Criminology An Integrative Approach

ISBN-10: 1843928051
ISBN-13: 9781843928058
Edition: 2011
Authors: Richard Wortley
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Description: The book provides a comprehensive coverage of psychological theories of crime and criminality. Rather than present various psychological perspectives as a series of discrete and rival explanations, the aim of the book is to emphasise the connections  More...

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Book details

Copyright year: 2011
Publisher: Willan Publishing
Publication date: 5/25/2011
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 276
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.50" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 1.210
Language: English

The book provides a comprehensive coverage of psychological theories of crime and criminality. Rather than present various psychological perspectives as a series of discrete and rival explanations, the aim of the book is to emphasise the connections among approaches, and to show how, taken together, they provide a more complete picture of crime and criminality than each provides individually. Theories are arranged in a temporal sequence, from distal to proximal causes of crime. Some theories focus on factors that are present at birth; other theories focus on factors that influence the offender over the lifespan; and other theories focus on factors that are present at the crime scene. The analysis spans 100,000 years, from the evolutionary roots of criminal behaviour in the ancestral environments of early humans on the African savana, to the decision to engage in a specific criminal act.

Richard Wortley is Head of the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Griffith University, Brisbane. He has a Ph.D in psychology from Macquarie University, Sydney, and began his career as a prison psychologist in the New South Wales prison system, a position he held for nine years. It was his experience in prisons that convinced Dr Wortley of the crucial role of the immediate environment in shaping human behaviour in general and prisoner behaviour in particular. During this period he was involved in the establishment of the first unit management facility in an Australian prison (Bathurst Gaol), and the success of these units in reducing violence showed him that positive change in prison was possible. Since taking up a university position he has taught and researched in the areas of corrections and crime prevention. Recent articles have appeared in Law and Human Behaviour, Journal of Applied Social Psychology, Crime Prevention Studies and Studies in Crime and Crime Prevention. He is currently National Chair of the Australian College of Forensic Psychologists.

List of illustrations
Acknowledgements
Introduction
What is psychological criminology?
Defining crime and criminals
Debates about the nature of crime and criminality
Psychological theories of crime and criminality: an integrated model
Human nature
The principles of evolution
Evolution and behaviour
Crime-focused evolutionary approaches
Offender-focused evolutionary approaches
Conclusion and evaluation
Heredity
A primer in behavioural genetics
Heritability of criminality
Variations in the heritability of criminality
Beyond behavioural genetics: molecular genetics
Conclusion and evaluation
The brain
Basic brain structures and functions
Psychophysiology and crime
Biochemistry and crime
Neuroanatomy and crime
Neuro-environmental factors and crime
Putting it together: neuropsychological theories of crime
Conclusion and evaluation
Personality
Trait approaches to personality
The single-trait approach and crime
The super-trait approach: Eysenck's three-factor theory of crime
Antisocial personality disorder (APD)
Conclusion and evaluation
Development
The biological and environmental foundations of human development
Developmental risk and protective factors for crime
Psychosocial development and crime
Criminal careers
Conclusion and evaluation
Learning
The science of behaviour
Classical conditioning
Operant conditioning
Social learning
Conclusion and evaluation
Cognition
The cognitive revolution
Social cognitive theory
Offender decision-making
Schemas and scripts
Conclusion and evaluation
Situations
What is a situation?
Social psychology
Environmental psychology
Opportunity theories
The person-situation interaction (again)
Conclusion and evaluation
Conclusion
The argument in a nutshell
The strengths and limits of integration
Implications for practice
Bibliography
Index

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