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NCJ Number: 68223 Find in a Library
Title: DELINQUENCY AND THE MEDICAL MODEL - ARGUMENTS AGAINST THE MEDICALIZATION OF DEVIANT BEHAVIOR
Journal: NEUE PROXIS  Volume:8  Issue:3  Dated:(MARCH 1978)  Pages:213-226
Author(s): N HERRIGER
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 14
Format: Article
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: THE PRACTICE OF REGARDING CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR AS A SIGN OF ILLNESS AND EFFECTS OF THIS MEDICAL MODEL ON DELINQUENCY TREATMENT AND RESEARCH ARE DISCUSSED.
Abstract: ACCORDING TO THE MODEL, DELINQUENCY IS A SYMPTOM OF DISEASE; THE NOTION OF PATHOLOGY MAKES IT POSSIBLE TO ASSUME QUALITATIVE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN JUVENILE DELINQUENTS AND THEIR NORMAL CONTEMPORARIES, AND TO BELIEVE THAT A COMPLETE BIOLOGICAL EXPLANATION OF DEVIANT BEHAVIOR WILL BE POSSIBLE AT SOME TIME IN THE FUTURE. DEVIANCE IS FREQUENTLY ATTRIBUTED TO THE PRESENCE OF CERTAIN PERSONALITY CHARACTERISTICS, WHICH ARE GENETICALLY DETERMINED; SOCIAL AND BIOGRAPHICAL FACTORS ARE NOT CONSIDERED. TREATMENT APPROACHES FOLLOWING THIS THEORY TEND TO ISOLATE THE YOUNG INDIVIDUAL FROM HIS SOCIAL MILIEU AND TO EMPHASIZE THE OSTENSIBLY MIRACULOUS EFFECTS OF PSYCHOTROPIC DRUGS. PRINCIPAL SHORTCOMINGS OF THE MEDICAL MODEL ARE 1) ITS FAILURE TO ADMIT TO THE INFLUENCE OF SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT ON DEVIANT JUVENILES, AN AREA WHOSE RELEVANCE HAS BEEN DEMONSTRATED IN RECENT SOCIALIZATION RESEARCH; AND 2) SYSTEMATIC NEGLECT OF THE SOCIAL DETERMINATION OF DEVIANCE, WHICH HAS BECOME THE CENTRAL FOCUS OF LABELING THEORY. DESPITE ATTEMPTS TO REFORM JUVENILE ASSISTANCE PRACTICES, THE MEDICAL MODEL HAS REMAINED THE GUIDING PRINCIPLE. RESISTENCE TO CHANGE IS VIEWED AS THE CONSEQUENCE OF TENDENCIES BY INDIVIDUALS INVOLVED IN SOCIAL CONTROL TO RELY ON OVERSIMPLIFIED, COMMON-SENSE MISCONCEPTIONS. MOREOVER, THE MEDICAL MODEL ALSO LEGITIMIZES THE EXCLUSIVE COMPETENCE OF THE SO-CALLED HELPING PROFESSIONS, WHOSE FIELD OF ACTION WOULD BE CURTAILED IF INTERVENTION WERE ASSUMED BY CRIMINAL JUSTICE AUTHORITIES ON THE PRINCIPLE OF GUILT AND PUNISHMENT INSTEAD. FINALLY, EXPLOITATION OF THE MEDICAL MODEL BY CAPITALISTIC SOCIETY CONCEALS, AND THUS PERPETUATES INEQUITABLE POWER STRUCTURES. A BIBLIOGRAPHY IS SUPPLIED. --IN GERMAN. (KMD)
Index Term(s): Biological influences; Child development; Critiques; Deviance; Germany; Juvenile delinquency factors; Labeling theory; Legislation; Social classes; Social conditions; Socialization; Theory; Treatment
Note: ENTITLED DELINQUENCY - AN INTRODUCTION TO THE THEORY OF ENTITLED DELINQUENCY - AN INTRODUCTION TO THE THEORY OF
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