Companions in Crime: The Social Aspects of Criminal Conduct

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Cambridge University Press, Feb 18, 2002 - Psychology - 172 pages
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Criminologists often allude to 'peer influence' in explanations of crime and delinquency, but the meaning of that concept rarely receives careful attention. Companions in Crime organizes the extensive literature on peer influence and group delinquency into a coherent form for the first time. Chapters focus on the role of peers over the life course, the group nature of delinquent behavior, and the applicability of peer influence for explaining the major features of delinquent behavior. The most extensive chapter of the book examines possible mechanisms of peer influence and the evidence in favor of each. The principal thesis of Companions in Crime is that deviant behavior is predominantly social behavior, and criminologists must eventually determine the significance of that fact.
  

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Review: Companions in Crime: The Social Aspects of Criminal Conduct (Cambridge Studies in Criminology)

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Interesting book had some really good insights. Read full review

Contents

Introduction
1
Preliminary Issues
4
Peers in the Life Course
11
Peers in the Life Course
12
Crosscultural Variation in Peer Interaction
14
Historical and Structural Variation
16
Social Structure
17
Industrial Societies
18
Social Learning Theory
77
CrossSex Peer Influence
79
Groups Drugs and Delinquency
80
Boredom
82
Groups as Protection
83
Cooffenders and Opportunity
84
The Virtual Peer Group
86
Summary
88

Changing Peer Relations
20
Peers as Agents of Socialization
22
Peer Group Formation
26
Parents versus Peers
28
The Group Character of Crime and Delinquency
31
Features of Delinquent Groups
34
Other Features of Delinquent Groups
36
Do Groups Matter?
39
Peers and Delinquent Conduct
45
Fear of Ridicule
46
Loyalty
49
Status
51
Ridicule Loyalty and Status
55
Crime as Collective Behavior
58
Anonymity
60
Diffusion of Responsibility
61
Delinquency as Rowdy Behavior
63
The Group as Moral Universe
65
Mechanisms of Consensus
70
Sutherlands Theory of Differential Association
73
Evaluating the Theory
75
Applying Peer Explanations of Delinquency
91
Peers and the Life Course
99
Age Peers and Identity
105
Parents Peers and Delinquency
108
The Contest between Parents and Peers
112
Gender and Delinquency
114
Summary
117
Conclusion
119
Peers and Public Policy
124
Pending Questions
127
Age and Cooffending
129
Heterogeneity of Motivation in Groups
130
Structural Variation in Peer Associations
132
Inferring Peer Influence
133
Qualifications and Clarifications
136
Final Comments
139
Suggested Readings
141
References
151
Index
169
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