Biological Theories of Youth Crime Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

" (Magrid and McKelvey, 1990).

Although some analysts still toss around the question of nature vs. nurture, current research seems to be edging out nature and placing much more emphasis on nurture. Another notable expert who agrees with the author's premise is Benjamin B. Wolman. Wolman explores the foundations of deviant behavior in his widely-read book, "Antisocial Behavior: Personality Disorders from Hostility to Homicide," and emphasizes nurture almost to the exclusion of nature, in explaining why sociopaths are more and more prevalent in our society. According to Wolman, "the way that parents rear their children can be crucial. Parental rejection can adversely affect their children's self-confidence and self-reliance. Undeniably, these children will feel neglected and unwanted if their parents are not affectionate and considerate. These children cannot however behave aggressively toward their parents as they fear that they might retaliate. Instead, they behave aggressively toward weak people who are unable to fight back."

The opinions of the experts ring true. A look back over the past two or three decades highlights a vivid timeline of events leading up to today's crisis. Until the late 80s-early 90s, it was most acceptable for mothers to stay home with their children. In the early 80's, this attitude changed. The women's movement stormed upon the scene, bringing with it a tide of divorces, and single-parent households. Ruptures in the family unit and fatherless homes, contributed to a lack of juvenile supervision and spurred an increase in out-of-wedlock births. This period was followed by the thrifty-conscious 90s. By the late 90's, new welfare laws were passed, and low-income moms, who had previously been encouraged to stay on welfare and raise their children, were told they had to go to work.

Today, we need only to pick up a newspaper to see that younger and younger children are committing crimes that are more and more violent. To a great extent, we are now reaping the rewards of their lack of bonding time.

The authors of "Ghosts from the Nursery: Tracing the Roots of Violence" lay out their case out with startling clarity, and make a valuable contribution to the volume of literature on this subject. This is an important work. It shows us that abuse, neglect, and lack of bonding in early childhood is the most accurate explanation for the increasing incidence of youth violence and crime in our society, and this should be a wake-up call to every one of us. I believe the answer lies in prevention, and "Ghosts from the Nursery: Tracing the Roots of Violence "supports that conclusion.

References

Karr-Morse, Robin and Wiley, Meredith S., (1999). "Ghosts from the Nursery: Tracing the Roots of Violence" (1999). Chapter 2: Grand Central: Early Brain Anatomy and Violence. Pub Group West.

Magrid, Ken & McKelvey Carole a. (1990). "High Risk Children without a Conscience." Bantam, Doubleday, Dell.…

Sources Used in Document:

References

Karr-Morse, Robin and Wiley, Meredith S., (1999). "Ghosts from the Nursery: Tracing the Roots of Violence" (1999). Chapter 2: Grand Central: Early Brain Anatomy and Violence. Pub Group West.

Magrid, Ken & McKelvey Carole a. (1990). "High Risk Children without a Conscience." Bantam, Doubleday, Dell.

Wolman, Benjamin B. (1999). "Antisocial Behavior: Personality Disorders from Hostility to Homicide." Prometheus Books.

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