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NCJ Number: 202129 Find in a Library
Title: Great Escape: How Religion Alters the Delinquent Behavior of High-Risk Adolescents
Author(s): Byron R. Johnson; Marc B. Siegel
Date Published: 2003
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: Ctr for Research on Religion and Urban Civil Society
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Sale Source: Ctr for Research on Religion and Urban Civil Society
Leadership Hall
3814 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined whether religious commitment serves as a protective factor against delinquent behavior in at-risk youth.
Abstract: Inner-city Black male youth are one of the highest-risk populations in the United States. The authors sought to discover the factors that would predict Black youth success despite disadvantages such as living in poverty stricken communities. In order to identify such protective factors, the authors analyzed data from the Survey of Inner-City Black youth, which surveyed Black males aged 16 through 24 who resided in Boston, Chicago, and Philadelphia during 1979 and 1980. Measures of delinquency and measures of religiosity were under examination to test the hypothesis that greater individual religious commitment would reduce delinquent behavior in this population. Results of a two-tier hierarchical statistical model revealed that church attendance had a positive impact on the reduction of delinquent behavior across all measures of delinquency. However, the other measure of religious commitment, religious devotion, was not significantly linked to reductions in delinquent behavior. These findings are at odds with previous research that has found no significant direct link between religiosity and delinquency. The authors posit that the difference in findings is related to differences in the measure of religion and differences in the amount of community social control. Limitations of the current study include its use of cross-sectional data rather than longitudinal data. Appendix, figures, endnotes
Main Term(s): Juvenile delinquency prevention; Religion
Index Term(s): Black/African Americans; Children at risk; Illinois; Juvenile delinquency research; Massachusetts; Pennsylvania
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