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Foundations of Criminal Science, Volume 1: The Development of Knowledge

NCJ Number
G D Walters
Date Published
337 pages
This volume 1 of a 2-volume text on criminal science discusses aspects of the acquisition of information and knowledge in this field.
The five principal foundations of criminal science identified in the two volumes are the contextual features of crime, the correlates of criminal behavior, theoretical developments in the criminal science field, the use of criminal science data to evaluate current behavior and offer predictions about future behavior, and strategies for intervening with criminal offenders. The first three of these foundations are addressed in volume 1, and the last two are discussed in volume 2. Two chapters of volume 1 discuss the contextual features of crime. They examine crime and the behavior of criminals as each has evolved over a period of several hundred years of American history. They also survey research on cross-national comparisons of crime with attention to features that are apparently responsible for variations in international crime rates. This discussion is intended to provide the historical and cultural context of criminal behavior and to indicate how this influences the manner in which such behavior is expressed. Five chapters probe the correlates of crime under four categories: person, situation, interactive, and choice variables. Two chapters discuss models and theories of criminal behavior and a multi-pattern theory of criminal involvement. 11 tables, 11 figures, 1,026 references, and author and subject indexes