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NCJ Number: 65101 Find in a Library
Title: DETERRENCE THEORY - A RECONCEPTUALIZATION
Journal: CANADIAN JOURNAL OF CRIMINOLOGY  Volume:22  Issue:1  Dated:(JANUARY 1980)  Pages:23-35
Author(s): S D WEBB
Corporate Author: Canadian Assoc for the Prevention of Crime
Canada
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 13
Sponsoring Agency: Canadian Assoc for the Prevention of Crime
Ottawa, Ontario K1y 1e5, Canada
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: A TYPOLOGY OF DETERRENCE IS NEEDED WHICH RECOGNIZED THE SITUATIONAL MOTIVATION OF THE OFFENDER AND TAKES INTO ACCOUNT THE OFFENDER'S PERCEPTION OF THE DEVIANT ACT.
Abstract: SUCH A TYPOLOGY IS PRESENTED IN SKELETON FORM. RECENT INVESTIGATIONS OF THE CLASSICAL DETERRENCE MODEL SUGGEST THAT RESEARCH FOCUSES ON GENERAL RATHER THAN SPECIFIC DETERRENCE AND THAT THE DETERRENCE DOCTRINE IS SEEN FROM A SOCIAL PERSPECTIVE. TESTS OF THE DETERRENCE THEORY USING SOCIAL VARIABLES SUCH AS ARREST OR INCARCERATION RATES ARE MOST LIKELY INAPPROPRIATE SINCE DETERRENCE IS A PSYCHOLOGICAL THEORY. ATTENTION SHOULD FOCUS ON PERCEPTUAL VARIABLES SUCH AS PERCEIVED RISK. IN ADDITON, THESE MODELS SHOULD BE MORE SENSITIVE TO THE FACT THAT DIFFERENT OFFENDERS EXPERIENCE DIFFERING PRESSURES TO OFFEND AND THAT MANY OFFENSES ARE THE RESULT OF IRRATIONAL AND UNINTENTIONAL ACTS. DISTINCTIONS SHOULD BE MADE BETWEEN LAWABIDING, MARGINAL, AND CRIMINAL GROUPS IN THE POPULATION, AND BETWEEN IMPULSIVE OR SPONTANEOUS AND COMPULSIVE ACTS. THUS, DETERRENCE THROUGH LEGAL SANCTIONS IS RELEVANT TO ONLY A LIMITED SEGMENT OF THE POPULATION, AND EVEN THESE GROUPS WILL BE DIFFERENTIALLY DETERRABLE, DEPENDING UPON A COMPLEX VARIETY OF PERSONAL, SITUATIONAL, AND PERCEPTUAL FACTORS. A TYPOLOGY OF DETERRENCE SHOULD INCLUDE NOT ONLY LEGAL SANCTIONS--SEVERITY, CERTAINTY, AND CELERITY, OR SPEED--BUT SUCH EXTRALEGAL CONDITIONS AS CRIMINAL SELF-IMAGE, CRIMINAL LIFE ORGANIZATION, GROUP SUPPORT, DIFFERENTIAL ASSOCIATION, AND MORAL COMMITMENT. ADDITIONAL FACTORS WOULD INCLUDE THE INDIVIDUAL'S KNOWLEDGE OF THE LAW; THE OPPORTUNITY FOR CRIME COMMISSION AND CASE OF EXECUTION; AND SOCIAL STIGMA AND THE LABELING PROCESS. REFERENCES AND TABLES ON THE APPLICABILITY OF THE DETERRENCE MODEL AND TYPES OF OFFENSES AND LEGAL AND EXTRALEGAL DIMENSIONS INFLUENCING THE DIFFERENTIAL SUSCEPTIBILITY OF OFFENDERS TO DETERRENCE ARE GIVEN. (AOP)
Index Term(s): Canada; Deterrence; Deterrence effectiveness; Individual behavior; Research design
Note: REVISED VERSION OF A PAPER PRESENTED TO THE INTERNATIONAL SOCIOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION, WORLD CONGRESS OF SOCIOLOGY, UPPSALA, SWEDEN, AUGUST 15, 1978
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=65101

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