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NCJ Number: 127903 Find in a Library
Title: Positivist Victimology: A Critique
Journal: International Review of Victimology  Volume:1  Issue:1  Dated:(1989)  Pages:3-22
Author(s): Miers
Date Published: 1989
Page Count: 20
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This article traces the development of two main theoretical accounts of victimization.
Abstract: The first of its two parts is an intellectual history of positivist victimology. In its attempt to define victimization by an examination of those held to be victims, positivist victimology has traditionally pursued three major concerns: the identification of factors in individuals or their environment that conduce to a non-random risk of victimization, a concentration on interpersonal crimes of violence, and the identification of victims who may be held to have contributed to their victimization. The article argues that each of these concerns suffers from serious difficulties which have inevitably limited the potential of positivist victimology to explain the everyday social process of identifying and responding to victimizing events. The second part argues that this process performs a central role in social life; it is a principal means by which societies maintain their values and identify the limits of noncompliance with them. Critical victimology argues that, as the process of labelling individuals as victims involves a statement of values, it is essential to analyze how, when, and why some who sustain injury are labelled victims and others not. The article draws on work within social psychology to explain the main parameters of these decisions. 18 notes and 86 references (Author abstract)
Main Term(s): Victimology
Index Term(s): Psychological research; Victim profiles; Victimization models
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