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Modern Control Theory and the Limits of Criminal Justice$
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Michael Gottfredson and Travis Hirschi

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780190069797

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190069797.001.0001

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Multiple Causes and Multiple Factors in a Choice Theory of Crime

Multiple Causes and Multiple Factors in a Choice Theory of Crime

Chapter:
(p.93) Chapter 5 Multiple Causes and Multiple Factors in a Choice Theory of Crime
Source:
Modern Control Theory and the Limits of Criminal Justice
Author(s):

Michael Gottfredson

Travis Hirschi

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190069797.003.0005

Creating concrete operational indicators for narrative depictions of complex concepts, identifying and recruiting appropriate samples, and identifying designs permitting informed causal judgments in a largely nonexperimental field are among the most challenging intellectual achievements in the behavioral sciences. This chapter discusses misuses of self-control theory in research on crime and delinquency. It presents a critical evaluation of the “sole cause” and “spuriousness thesis” in depictions of self-control theory. Multiple factor and risk factor approaches as alternatives to general theories are discussed. In addition, the chapter examines how a choice theory integrates demographic factors and crime and the idea of family variables as a structural approach to crime theory. The integration of individual differences and sociological theory is also discussed.

Keywords:   spuriousness, sole cause fallacy, multiple factor approach, crime, gender and crime, age and crime, motives for crime, family and crime

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