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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 50879 Find in a Library
Title: PERCEIVED CLOSURE AND RESPECT FOR THE LAW AMONG DELINQUENT AND NONDELINQUENT YOUTHS
Journal: YOUTH AND SOCIETY  Volume:9  Issue:4  Dated:(JUNE 1978)  Pages:385-406
Author(s): G W KNOX
Corporate Author: Sage Publications, Inc
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 22
Sponsoring Agency: Sage Publications, Inc
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN DIFFERENCES IN LEARNING AND PERFORMANCE OPPORTUNITIES AMONG JUVENILES AND JUVENILE DELINQUENCY IS STUDIED BY ANALYZING INTERVIEW RESPONSES OBTAINED FROM 216 YOUTHS.
Abstract: STUDIES ARE REVIEWED WHICH CONSIDER OPPORTUNITY SYSTEM THEORY IN REGARD TO ROLE-MODEL TYPES ADOPTED BY YOUTHS, AND AN AXIOMATIC MODEL OF OPPORTUNITY SYSTEM THEORY IS DESCRIBED. A NECESSARY IMPLICATION OF THE THEORY IS THAT AN INDIVIDUAL EXPERIENCES A SOCIALLY GENERATED STRAIN TOWARD DEVIANCE WHEN CULTURALLY PRESCRIBED SUCCESS GOALS ARE APPARENT AND THERE IS A PERCEIVED CLOSURE IN THE AVAILABILITY OF LEGITIMATE OPPORTUNITIES. DISCONTENT THEN RESULTS, AND THIS DISCONTENT IS MEASURED BY THE EXTENT OF THE INDIVIDUAL'S RESPECT FOR THE LAW; IT CAN BE CONSIDERED AN INTERVENING VARIABLE FOR AN INDIVIDUAL PURSUING A DEVIANT CAREER. THIS STUDY EXAMINES THE FOLLOWING HYPOTHESES: (1) PERCEIVED CLOSURE IN THE EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITY STRUCTURE VARIES BY RACE, DELINQUENCY STATUS, AND SEX; (2) PERCEIVED CLOSURE IN THE OCCUPATIONAL OPPORTUNITY STRUCTURE VARIES BY RACE, DELINQUENCY STATUS, AND SEX; (3) RESPECT FOR THE LAW VARIES BY RACE, DELINQUENCY STATUS, AND SEX; AND (4) PERCEIVED LEGITIMATE OPPORTUNITY CLOSURE VARIES INVERSELY WITH RESPECT FOR THE LAW. THE STUDY SAMPLE WAS DIVIDED INTO DELINQUENT AND NONDELINQUENT GROUPS, THE FORMER CONSISTING OF 107 YOUTHS PROCESSED THROUGH THE DALLAS COUNTY (TEX.) JUVENILE DETENTION CENTER AND THE LATTER OF 109 YOUTHS FROM JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT GROUPS IN DALLAS. THE DELINQUENT GROUP WAS 78 PERCENT MALE AND 23 PERCENT BLACK, WHILE THE NONDELINQUENT GROUP WAS 45 PERCENT MALE AND 61 PERCENT BLACK. DATA WERE ANALYZED ON A LIKERT SCALE USING A FACTORIAL DESIGN. THE FINDINGS SHOWED THAT DELINQUENT YOUTHS PERCEIVE A SIGNIFICANTLY GREATER DEGREE OF CLOSURE IN THE EDUCATIONAL AND OCCUPATIONAL OPPORTUNITY STRUCTURES THAN NONDELINQUENT YOUTHS. DELINQUENT YOUTHS ALSO SHOWED A SIGNIFICANTLY LOWER ATTITUDE OF RESPECT FOR THE LAW. IT APPEARS THAT THE OPPORTUNITY SYSTEM THEORY CAN BE APPLIED AND EXPANDED IN SCOPE TO ADDRESS A VARIETY OF YOUTH PROBLEMS, SUCH AS DELINQUENCY IN GANGS AND SUCCESSFUL TRANSITION OF YOUTH INTO ADULT CONVENTIONAL ROLES. REFERENCES ARE INCLUDED. (DAG)
Index Term(s): Analysis; Attitudes; Behavior; Juvenile delinquency factors; Juvenile Delinquent-nondelinquent comparisons; Perception; Role perception; Studies
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=50879

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