Criminal Circumstance / Edition 1

Criminal Circumstance / Edition 1

by Scott A. Hunt, Kenneth Land, Pamela Wilcox, Kenneth C. Land
     
 

The main objective of this book is to propose an alternative criminal opportunity theory. The authors build upon social control and routine activities to develop a dynamic, multi-contextual criminal opportunity theory. Emphasizing the importance of contextual explanations of criminal acts, they propose two levels of analysis: individual and environmental. At

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Overview

The main objective of this book is to propose an alternative criminal opportunity theory. The authors build upon social control and routine activities to develop a dynamic, multi-contextual criminal opportunity theory. Emphasizing the importance of contextual explanations of criminal acts, they propose two levels of analysis: individual and environmental. At each level, the theory pivots on three broad organizing constructs--offenders motivated to commit criminal acts, targets such as persons or property suitable as objects of criminal acts, and the presence or absence of individuals or other defensive mechanisms capable of serving as guardians against criminal acts.

Crime is profoundly real, possessing qualities that make its occurrence and prevention pressing and persistent matters for individuals and societies. Theory, in contrast, is seen as highly abstract and removed from the seriousness of "real life." Theory almost seems to be a peculiar sport of an academic class. The practically minded, even some academic criminologists, are often perplexed by the seeming obsession some scholars have with theory, which, after all, is nothing more than an explanation of facts. The practically minded, seeing a compelling need to identify the crucial factors that could be used to predict and prevent crime, wonder why anyone would invest precious time and energy into speculating about the abstract, underlying details of why crime occurs when and where it does.

The authors contend that every intervention, prevention, and policy is based on some theoretical explanation of the causes of human behavior. The improvement of interventions, preventions, and policies is thus directly related to the improvement of theoretical understandings of the abstract, underlying details of the causes of crime. The development of explanations of events, when properly done, is a crucial component to understanding and possibly improving the "real world." This work does just that.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780202307213
Publisher:
Transaction Publishers
Publication date:
04/01/2002
Series:
New Lines in Criminology Series
Edition description:
REV
Pages:
248
Product dimensions:
5.88(w) x 8.94(h) x 0.60(d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures
List of Tables
Acknowledgments
Preface
1Theory Generally and a General Theory of Crime: Some Preliminary Considerations1
2Criminal Opportunity: A Necessary Condition and Central Construct21
3A Multicontextual Approach44
4Evidence and Specification of Main Effects69
5Evidence and Specification of Moderating Effects97
6Implications for Reactions to Crime126
7A Dynamic Perspective141
8Possibilities and Limitations for Empirical Research171
9Implications for Policy and Practice192
References213
Index240

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