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NCJ Number: 68054 Find in a Library
Title: CURRENT TRENDS IN CRIMINOLOGY
Journal: REVUE INTERNATIONALE DE CRIMINOLOGIE ET DE POLICE TECHNIQUE  Volume:32  Issue:3  Dated:(JULY/SEPTEMBER 1979)  Pages:231-237
Author(s): D SZABO
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 7
Format: Article
Language: French
Country: Switzerland
Annotation: CRIMINOLOGY HAS FOUR DISTINCT, YET OVERLAPPING ASPECTS--IT IS A SCIENCE, A PRACTICE, A POLICY, AND A PUBLIC OPINION.
Abstract: AS A SCIENCE, CRIMINOLOGY HAS TAKEN ON MULTIDISCIPLINARY FEATURES, PULLING ITS ARGUMENTS FROM SOCIOLOGY, BIOLOGY, AND PSYCHOLOGY, AND IS TYPIFIED BY DEBATES THAT RAGE BETWEEN THOSE WHICH BASE THEIR THEORIES ON BIOLOGICAL AND HEREDITARY CAUSES OF CRIME AND THOSE WHICH BLAME CRIME ON ENVIRONMENTAL AND SOCIAL ILLS. ANY CRIMINOLOGIST WHO ATTEMPTS TO ARRIVE AT CRIMINOLOGICAL CONCLUSIONS MUST RECOGNIZE THE IMPORTANCE OF SUPPORTING SOCIAL AND THEORETICAL DISCIPLINES. APPLIED CRIMINOLOGICAL DISCIPLINE MUST TAKE FROM THEORETICAL CRIMINOLOGY INTERVENTION TECHNIQUES AND PRINCIPLES OF ACTION, PLANNING, AND PREDICTION. YET APPLIED CRIMINOLOGY ALSO HAS A LIFE OF ITS OWN, WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS AND ATTORNEYS CONVEYING TRADITIONAL RETRIBUTIVE FEELINGS, DESPITE THE REFORMIST TEACHINGS OF CRIMINOLOGICAL SCIENCE. THE NEW CRIMINOLOGICAL REFORMS ARE JUST STARTING TO APPEAR IN PRACTICE, WITH INDETERMINATE SENTENCES AND PROBATION PAVING THE WAY FOR DEJUDICIALIZATION. ON THE OTHER HAND, THEORETICAL CRIMINOLOGY SEEMS TO BE INEXTRICABLY ENTANGLED WITH CRIMINAL POLICY; GOVERNMENTS FORM THEIR SOCIAL POLICY AROUND SUCH MEASURES AS THOSE PROJECTED TOWARD ASSURING SECURITY FOR PERSONS AND THEIR PROPERTY AND TOWARD PREVENTING CRIMINALITY. AS EACH SOCIETY IN EACH NEW ERA PRODUCES ITS OWN BRAND OF CRIME, SO MUST SOCIAL AND CRIMINAL POLICY CHANGE TO ACCOMMODATE NEW CRIMINAL METHODS. WITHIN CRIMINAL POLICY, THE DEBATE BETWEEN THE SCHOOLS OF THEORETICAL CRIMINOLOGY CONTINUES, WITH THOSE WHO SEE CRIMINALS AS VICTIMS OF SOCIAL CONDITIONS ARGUING WITH THOSE WHO SEE CRIME AS A FREE CHOICE OF THE INDIVIDUAL. THESE VARIOUS STRAINS ARE THEN MINGLED IN POLICY, PRODUCING A RICH MIXTURE THAT LEADS IT FORWARD WITH THE CHANGING SOCIETY. THE PUBLIC VIEWS CRIMINOLOGY, IN PRACTICE, POLICY, AND THEORY, AS BOTH THE INSTIGATOR OF DESIRABLE SOCIAL CHANGE AND THE SCAPEGOAT FOR PUBLIC FEAR WHEN CRIME INCREASES, A FEAR WHICH STEERS THE PUBLIC TOWARDS REPRESSION. OVERALL, CRIMINOLOGY IS A MEETING POINT FOR GOODWILL, INTELLECTUAL THOUGHT, AND A SPIRIT OF SERVICE THAT WISHES TO HELP RENDER THE WORLD LESS DANGEROUS FOR CITIZENS AND MORE JUST FOR HUMANITY. FOOTNOTES ARE PROVIDED. --IN FRENCH.
Index Term(s): Criminology; Police attitudes; Policy; Public Attitudes/Opinion; Trend analysis
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=68054

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