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An essential approach in understanding crime is
whether the people who commit offences think
differently to non-offenders.
The belief that criminals have different thought
processes to non-criminals is a basic and
fundamental explanation of criminal behaviour.…read more

Slide 3

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1) To understand the makeup of the criminal
2) To establish techniques that could be used to
alter the personality disorders that produce
3) To encourage an understanding of legal
4) To establish techniques that can be effective in
preventing criminal behaviour…read more

Slide 4

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Longitudinal study
Conducted over 14 years
255 male participants
Various backgrounds: white, black, poor, suburbs, etc.
Interviewed at various points over the years
The population of studied offenders was composed
of those confined to the hospital who has been found
guilty but pleaded insanity
As well as a roughly equal number of convicted
criminals who were not confined to the institution.
Most participants dropped out- Only 30 completed
the programme of interviews…read more

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Criminals are...
Restless, dissatisfied and irritable
Continually set themselves apart from others
Want to live a life of excitement, at any cost
Habitually angry
Lack empathy
Feel under no obligation to anyone or anything…read more

Slide 6

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To conclude, a total of 52 thinking patterns were distinguished in
the criminal personality, which were considered to be 'errors' in
The authors suggest that criminals have quite distinct and
erroneous thinking patterns which differentiate them from non-
They concluded that they are essentially in control of their lives
and their criminality is the results of choices made from an early
Further, they suggest that offenders have cognitive processes
which lead to a distorted self image and result not only in
criminal choices but also in denial of responsibility.
However, there is no single cause of criminal behaviour, and it is
a combination of both genetic and environmental factors
contributes to the thought processes of a criminal.
Furthermore, as there was no control group so we cannot be
certain that these traits are only found in criminals.…read more


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