Is there a genetic predisposition to crime? Should mental illness be taken into account? Do family and social environments have a role? Do people become abusers because they have been abused? How can people who do terrible things consider themselves good people? What should someone involved in a relationship with a criminal know? Stanton Samenow, co-author of the widely respected three-volume study of The Criminal Personality, has collected the questions posed by audiences during his speaking engagements of the past twenty-eight years about causes, characteristics, and treatments of antisocial behavior. Now he draws on his research and clinical experience with hundreds of men, women, and children to offer no-frills answers that embody his informed perspectives on some of the toughest policy issues facing individuals, institutions, and governments today. A Jason Aronson Book
Dr. Samenow knows more about the criminal personality than anyone I know. The 'straight talk about criminals' he gives us, after spending more than twenty-seven years interviewing, evaluating, and treating men, women, and children convicted of a variety of crimes, is a must-read for anyone working with convicted felons as well as for the lay person with questions about the criminal personality and how it got to be that way.
John C. Gibbs
Stanton Samenow drives home with unprecedented power the revolutionary discovery of his clinical experience—namely, that to treat the antisocial individual we must understand the self-serving distortions of the criminal mind. Only recently has cognitive-behavioral research caught up with and confirmed Samenow's discovery, which is lucidly articulated and expanded through a straightforward question-and-answer format. Straight Talk About Criminals should be required reading for anyone who would work with chronic offenders.
Chapter 1 The Criminal Personality: An Introduction Chapter 2 Criminal Behavior Is a Result Not of Environment but of an Individual's Choices Chapter 3 Environmental Factors Do Not Cause Crime Chapter 4 Bad Parenting Does Not Cause Crime Chapter 5 People Do Not Become Abusers and Criminals Because They Were Abused Chapter 6 Biological/Genetic Contributions to Criminality Need Not Preordain Incarceration Chapter 7 The Alleged Increase in Crime: It Is Not Human Nature but Laws, Law Enforcement, and Deterrents that Change Chapter 8 Individuals with a Criminal Mind View Life Differently Than Do Responsible People Chapter 9 The Criminal Mind Exists Independent of Particular Laws, Culture, or Customs Chapter 10 The Criminal's After-the-Fact Excuses Rarely Reflect His True Motives Chapter 11 Criminals, Not Drugs, Cause Crime Chapter 12 Criminals Are Neither Mentally Ill Nor Victims of Addictions Chapter 13 Schools and Crime: Schools Must Combat Crime, Not Coddle Offenders Chapter 14 Criminals Can Change Chapter 15 Helping a Criminal Change Chapter 16 Agents of Change Chapter 17 Potential Criminal Patterns Can Be Identified Early and Preventive Steps Taken Chapter 18 Directions for Social Policy Chapter 19 Offbeat Questions Chapter 20 Personal Questions Chapter 21 A Final Note Chapter 22 Appendix 1: An Overview of The Criminal Personality Chapter 23 Appendix 2: Recommended Reading Chapter 24 Index