skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 222059 Find in a Library
Title: Keeping a Safe Distance: Individualism and the Less Punitive Public
Journal: British Journal of Criminology  Volume:48  Issue:2  Dated:March 2008  Pages:190-208
Author(s): Anna King
Date Published: March 2008
Page Count: 19
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This paper examines individual differences in punishment or ‘get tough’ attitudes towards lawbreakers by looking in depth at the nature of worldviews that have been identified as decidedly forgiving.
Abstract: In summation, a forgiving or merciful worldview towards criminal offenders is associated with a highly individualistic orientation which keeps a safe distance from issues that do not directly affect one’s own life. This thought is reinforced by a distrust of authority that aligns sympathies with those who are subjected to its force. The focus of this research paper is on the way in which narrators who hold decidedly forgiving views towards punishment, crime, and offenders talk about their lives and experiences rather than on simply evaluating the objective realities of their lives. The result of this examination is hoped to be one that will help uncover ways of seeing the world that help maintain forgiving, merciful emotional stances towards offenders. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Public Opinion of Crime
Index Term(s): Citizen crime tolerance; Citizen reactions to crime; Punishment
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.