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Introduction to Criminological Theory

NCJ Number
Roger Hopkins Burke
Date Published
298 pages
This volume explains criminological theory for students taking courses in criminology, criminal justice, and related topics and for others interested in criminology.
The text’s first three parts address ideal-type models that have sought to explain crime and criminal behavior. These models are the rational actor model, the predestined actor model, and the victimized actor model. The text locates various criminological theories chronologically within these models and explores the strengths and weaknesses of each theory and model. It also describes and analyzes legal, biological, psychological, and sociological explanations of crime and criminal behavior, including deterrence, rational choice, routine activities, biological, psychodynamic, behavioral, personality, cognitive, strain, labeling, feminist, and critical theories. The book’s fourth part examines recent attempts to integrate theoretical elements from both within and across models of criminal behavior. It covers socio-biological, environmental, and social control theories, as well as the perspective of left realism. It also focuses on contemporary debates about modernity and postmodernity in relation to criminological explanations of the problem of crime and the position that mot theories of crime and criminal behavior are useful in some situations relating to crime and criminals. Lists of suggested readings related to each chapter, glossary subject and author indexes, and approximately 450 references (Publisher summary modified)