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Using General Strain Theory To Explore the Effects of Prison Victimization Experiences on Later Offending and Substance Use

NCJ Number
Prison Journal Volume: 95 Issue: 1 Dated: March 2015 Pages: 84-113
Janine M. Zweig; Jennifer Yahner; Christy A. Visher; Pamela K. Lattimore
Date Published
March 2015
30 pages
This study examined the relationship between victimization during incarceration and the likelihood of former prisoners' subsequent criminal behavior and substance use from a general strain theory (GST) perspective.
Path analyses provide support for GST by indicating that prisoners who were physically assaulted or threatened in prison had negative emotional reactions to such experiences, specifically hostility and depression, which increased their likelihood of violent criminal behavior and substance use after release. Study data were obtained from the multi-site evaluation of the Serious and Violent Offender Reentry Initiative, which involved interviews with 543 men and 168 women in 12 States at four time points, once before prison release and three times after release. (Publisher abstract modified)