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NCJ Number: 118942 Find in a Library
Title: Exploring Alternatives to Integrated Theory (From Theoretical Integration in the Study of Deviance and Crime: Problems and Prospects, P 37-49, 1989, Steven F Messner, et al, eds. -- See NCJ-118940)
Author(s): T Hirschi
Date Published: 1989
Page Count: 13
Sponsoring Agency: California Correctional Peace Officers Assoc
West Sacramento, CA 95605
Sale Source: California Correctional Peace Officers Assoc
755 Riverpoint Drive
West Sacramento, CA 95605
United States of America
Type: Research (Theoretical)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter advises restraint in integrating criminological theory, based on an examination of the pattern of theoretical development in criminology.
Abstract: A succession of theories has been generated in opposition to extant theories has been generated in progression, since it was an old theory framed in a new package. This crisis generated the push for integrated theories that downplay the significance of fundamentally opposed views of the world. Integrated theories restrain and distort progress unless the constituent theories already share assumptions and are virtually the same theory. As long as theorists are debating among themselves, the terms of the debate are likely to be defined by traditional theoretical concepts, and opportunities for empirical input will be limited. Also, as long as existing theories are the primary concern, the favored mode of research will tend to be the large-scale survey, whose systematic data allow direct test of theory-derived hypotheses. This is not conducive to the discovery of ideas. An inductive orientation, whereby theory is developed from facts, is more likely to yield improved theories of crime causes. This approach is illustrated in the author's own work on the age-crime relationship.
Main Term(s): Criminology theory evaluation
Index Term(s): Causal models; Crime causes theory
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