Causes of Delinquency Revisited

By Barbara J Costello, Chester Britt

© 2017 – Routledge

225 pages

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415805193
pub: 2017-01-01
Hardback: 9780415805186
pub: 2017-01-01

e–Inspection Copy

About the Book

Peers often act as agents of informal social control and influence each other both away from deviance and toward positive, prosocial behaviors. Criminology research has neglected studying positive peer influence, a potentially powerful source of social control that may help the field understand the causes of deviance. Criminologists have been unsuccessful in studying the actual mechanisms of both positive and negative peer influence. In Causes of Delinquency Revisited, Costello and Hope take a first step toward uncovering these mechanisms, drawing on quantitative and qualitative data collected from two convenience samples of university students. Their quantitative analyses shows that positive peer influence occurs most frequently among those who associate with the most deviant peers and self-report the most deviance. Their qualitative data reveal a variety of mechanisms for negative influence, including a previously undiscovered motivation encouraging a peer toward deviance for the entertainment of group members.

Written in clear, engaging language and illustrated with students’ self-reported experiences of peer pressure, this book addresses criminologists and sociologists, and can be used as a text for graduate students and undergraduates. Costello and Hope aim to spur a new research agenda in the field of criminology, one that recognizes the potentially powerful impact of positive peer pressure, and seriously questions prevailing assumptions.

Table of Contents

Ch 1: The Current Understanding of Peer Influence

Ch 2: Qualitative Accounts of Negative Peer Influence

Ch 3: Qualitative Accounts of Positive Peer Influence

Ch 4: Quantitative Data Analysis of Positive Peer Influence

Ch 5: Conclusions and Directions for Further Research

About the Series

Criminology and Justice Studies

Criminology and Justice Studies publishes books for undergraduate and graduate courses that model the best scholarship and innovative thinking in the criminology and criminal justice field today, but in a style that connects this scholarship to a wide audience of students, researchers, and possibly the general public.

We are particularly interested in proposals that offer a global perspective on crime and justice, that present a novel approach to more traditional areas of study, or that develop a new way to incorporate the wide and evolving array of digital technologies available to college and university instructors.  If you have a publishing project to propose, we look forward to hearing from you! Please contact any of our Series Editors or the Routledge Editor, Joseph Parry.

Chester Britt,

Shaun Gabbidon,

Nancy Rodriguez,

Joseph Parry,

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Criminology
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General