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NCJ Number: 217979 Find in a Library
Title: Something Old, Something New: A Preliminary Investigation of Hirschi's Redefined Self-Control
Journal: Justice Quarterly  Volume:24  Issue:1  Dated:March 2007  Pages:1-27
Author(s): Alex R. Piquero; Jeff A. Bouffard
Date Published: March 2007
Page Count: 27
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study collected and analyzed original data in order to test Hirschi's redefinition and modification of his concept of self-control as a general determining factor in criminal behavior, comparing the predictive ability of his concept of self-control with the most commonly used measure of self-control.
Abstract: The findings show that Hirschi's new definition of self-control as the tendency to consider the full range of potential costs of a particular act was significantly and negatively associated with two types of criminal acts, drunk-driving and sexual coercion. The findings further revealed that Hirschi's redefined self-control measure, which involves considering all costs of a particular action, had better predictive power for criminal behavior than Gottredson and Hirschi's previous concept of self-control as involving consideration of primarily long-term costs. These findings suggest that there may be future opportunities for integrating self-control and rational-choice theories of crime, since there is apparently a logical link between an individual's self-control, as redefined by Hirschi, and the content and processes involved in "rational" decisionmaking. A sample of 212 young adults were recruited from 2 sections of an introductory college course and presented with 2 hypothetical offending situations in a paper-and-pencil survey format. The scenarios were a hypothetical drunk-driving incident and a hypothetical sexual-coercion incident. The latter scenario was presented only to men. After reading each scenario, respondents were asked several questions related to their likelihood of engaging in similar behaviors. The dependent variable was the likelihood of a respondent's offending under a similar scenario. The independent variables were features of Hirschi's redefined concept of self-control, items on the self-control scale developed by Grasmick et al., and measures of respondents' social bonding. 3 tables and 72 references
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Crime causes theory; Driving Under the Influence (DUI); Problem behavior; Risk taking behavior; Sex offenses; Sexual behavior
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