ERIC Number: ED262341
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Toward a Theory of Delinquency Cessation.
Mulvey, Edward P.
Delinquency intervention and research have undergone changes in recent years. One new line of research has been aimed at mapping out juvenile criminal careers. Findings from this research suggest that involvement in technically delinquent activity may be a transitory, developmental phenomenon related to adolescence. Youth appear to be increasingly involved in antisocial acts up to the age of 16 and then to show a marked decline in antisocial behaviors. The new task for research becomes one of mapping out the separate processes by which youth become involved in, stay involved in, and stop involvement in delinquent behaviors. A developmental perspective should be of major importance in the formulation of delinquency theory and the influences that promote cessation should play a key role in secondary prevention efforts. Delinquency cessation generally occurs at an age that marks a youth's passage into adulthood. It is possible that fear of adult criminal sanctions has a marked impact on the calculation of the likely risk of continued criminal activity. It is also possible that older adolescents have a greater investment in a conventional lifestyle and feel they have more to lose by continued criminal activity. In exploring the cessation of delinquent behavior in late adolescence, it would seem imperative to focus investigation on the juvenile's perceptions of the impending role change into young adulthood. (NRB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Florence V. Burden Foundation, New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (93rd, Los Angeles, CA, August 23-27, 1985).