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NCJ Number: 155880 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Family Relationships, Juvenile Delinquency, and Adult Criminality
Journal: Criminology  Volume:29  Issue:3  Dated:(1991)  Pages:397-417
Author(s): J McCord
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 21
Sponsoring Agency: US Dept of Health and Human Services
Rockville, MD 20857
Grant Number: MH26779
Type: Research (Applied/Empirical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Home observations during childhood and criminal records 30 years later were used to assess the impact of features of child rearing that influenced male criminal outcomes.
Abstract: The study included 232 boys who had been randomly selected for a treatment program designed to prevent delinquency. The boys lived in congested urban areas near Boston, and counselors visited their homes about twice a month over a period of more than 5 years. Child rearing variables included family structure, family conflict, and esteem of each parent for the other, as well as parental supervision and discipline, warmth, self-confidence, role, aggressiveness, alcoholism, and criminality. Comparisons for the impact of child rearing showed that mother's competence, father's interaction with the family, and family expectations were related to delinquency. Considered separately, poor child rearing in each of these domains reliably increased the risk of delinquency. Only 5 percent of boys reared by competent mothers in families with good parental interaction and high expectations became delinquents. In contrast, almost half of those raised by incompetent mothers in homes with poor paternal interaction and low expectations became delinquents. Although maternal behavior influenced delinquency and thus adult criminality, paternal interaction with the family had a more direct influence on the probability of adult criminal behavior. Competent mothers seemed to insulate children against criminogenic influences even in deteriorated neighborhoods. 80 references and 8 tables
Main Term(s): Juvenile delinquent family relations
Index Term(s): Adult offenders; Juvenile delinquency factors; Male juvenile delinquents; Male offenders; Massachusetts; Parental influence; Urban area studies; Urban criminality
Note: DCC
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