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NCJ Number: 66188 Find in a Library
Title: CRIMINAL PERSONALITY - IMPLICATIONS OF A 16-YEAR STUDY FROM INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY CORRECTIONS AND THE BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES - INTERAGENCY WORKSHOP - PROCEEDINGS - ANNUAL, THIRTEENTH - HOUSTON (TX), 1978 - SEE NCJ-66183
Author(s): S E SAMENOW
Corporate Author: Sam Houston State University
Criminal Justice Ctr
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 5
Sponsoring Agency: Sam Houston State University
Huntsville, TX 77340
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A PSYCHIATRIC STUDY OF HOW HABITUAL CRIMINALS THINK AND WAYS IN WHICH THEIR THINKING CAN BE CHANGED TO NORMATIVE PERCEPTIONS IS DESCRIBED.
Abstract: CONDUCTED BY DR. SAMUEL YOCHELSON AT ST. ELIZABETH'S HOSPITAL (A FEDERAL MENTAL INSTITUTION) IN WASHINGTON, D.C. OVER 17 YEARS, THE STUDY ANALYZED 255 PEOPLE WITH CRIMINAL BACKGROUNDS. EXTENSIVE INFORMATION WAS GATHERED ON THE SUBJECTS, WHO CAME FROM VARIED BACKGROUNDS, THROUGH RECORDS EXAMINATION AND INTERVIEWS WITH FAMILY MEMBERS, FRIENDS, AND OTHERS WHO HAD KNOWN THE SUBJECT. EXTENSIVE CONVERSATIONS AND ANALYSIS WERE CONDUCTED WITH THE OFFENDERS BUT EFFORTS TO IDENTIFY CAUSES OF THE SUBJECTS' CRIMINALITY PROVED FUTILE. THE STUDY THEN SHIFTED FROM CRIMINALITY CAUSES TO CRIMINAL WAYS OF THINKING, AS THE SUBJECTS' CHARACTERISTIC THINKING PROCESSES WERE EXPLORED. FROM AN EARLY AGE, THE SUBJECTS EVIDENCED AN UNCONTROLLABLE DETERMINATION TO MANIPULATE PEOPLE AND EXPERIENCES FOR THEIR OWN PLEASURE AND AGGRANDIZEMENT. THROUGH LYING, PERISISTENCE, AND LIKE-MINDED PEER GROUPS, ALL EFFORTS AT SOCIALIZATION WERE RESISTED. EVERY BOUNDARY TO EGO-SATISFACTION AND SELF ADVANCEMENT WAS IGNORED. THE STUDY INDICATED THAT CHANGES IN PERCEPTIONS AND WAYS OF THINKING ABOUT LIFE ARE THE KEY TO REFORMING CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR. SUSCEPTIBILITY TO CHANGE WAS FOUND TO EXIST MOST OFTEN DURING OR IMMEDIATELY AFTER A CRISIS IN WHICH A SUBJECT'S ABILITY TO CONTROL EVENTS AND PEOPLE HAD BEEN THWARTED (AFTER ARREST, SENTENCING, OR CONFINEMENT). AT SUCH TIMES, THE OFFENDER WAS MORE RECEPTIVE TO NEW WAYS OF THINKING AND DEALING WITH CIRCUMSTANCES. THE PROGRAM REQUIRES THAT PARTICIPANTS MEET IN SMALL GROUPS DAILY. THINKING IS REPORTED, AND THINKING ERRORS ARE IDENTIFIED. FEAR IS STIMULATED AND SELF-DISGUST IS ENHANCED FOR THE PURPOSE OF PROVIDING STIMULI FOR CHANGE. THE PROGRAM'S CRITERION FOR SUCCESS IS A CHANGE IN THINKING TO SUCH A DEGREE THAT CRIME NO LONGER EXISTS AS A SERIOUS OPTION. SUBJECTS ARE MONITORED AND SUPPORTED IN THEIR COMMUNITY ROLES. MONITORING CLIENTS OVER A NUMBER OF YEARS HAS SHOWN THE PROGRAM'S SUCCESS. (RCB)
Index Term(s): Attitudes; Habitual offenders; Perception; Rehabilitation; Research; Self concept
Note: NCJ-66188 AVAILABLE ON MICROFICHE (SEE NCJ-66183) FROM NCJRS.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=66188

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