THE PSYCHOLOGICAL WORLD OF THE JUVENILE DELINQUENT by Daniel; Richard C. Marohn & Eric Ostrov Offer

THE PSYCHOLOGICAL WORLD OF THE JUVENILE DELINQUENT

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The findings of this dry psychiatric study are tentative but worth pursuing. It is difficult to determine whether the rate of juvenile crime is higher today or whether society's tolerance for violence has decreased. In either case, there are recognizable character-trait constellations among chronic juvenile offenders and, contrary to much current thinking, most can participate in meaningful insight-oriented psychotherapy. To get to those crucial conclusions, however, one must penetrate elaborate methodological explanations and statistical mazes--general readers will be easily discouraged for the jargon is pervasive. But the four ""subtypes"" identified (from among a sample of black and white, male and female adolescents) are clearly represented and recommended strategies for therapy are concisely indicated. Basically, the researchers identify four personalities (impulsive, narcissistic, empty-borderline, depressed-borderline), follow representative case histories of each, and attempt to compare them to normal adolescents and their families. It's an ambitious project overall (searching out patterns of cognitive control functioning) and the researchers are direct in acknowledging the omission of race, sex, and socioeconomic factors; they are also meticulous in identifying not only the shortcomings of previous efforts in the field but their own in this research as well. A well-developed study of interest only to academic and professional audiences.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1979
Publisher: Basic Books