1st Edition

The Architecture of Desistance

ISBN 9781138617322
Published June 6, 2019 by Routledge
282 Pages

USD $155.00

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Book Description

The volume of studies into desistance has grown dramatically in recent years. Much of this research has focused on the internal dynamics of desistance such as decision-making, choice and restraint. Bringing together leading figures and drawing upon case studies from around the world, this book seeks to fill a vacuum in the contemporary literature on desistance by considering processes and practices at a societal level that influence how and why people desist from crime.

Beginning with an outline of what is known about how social, cultural and economic structures shape desistance from crime, this book proceeds to explore studies of desistance in countries such as the UK, Brazil, France, Israel, Ireland, Sweden and Chile. These studies touch on variations by ethnicity, the nature of the criminal justice system, economic cycles, gender, religious belief systems and the use of time and space. Policy matters relating to desistance such as the rehabilitation and supervision of former offenders are also explored.

This book will be invaluable reading to students and scholars of criminology, sociology and social studies engaged in studies of desistance, criminology, criminal justice, victimology, penology and probation.

Table of Contents

Part One: Setting the Scene

1. The Architecture of Desistance: Exploring the Structural Sources of Desistance and Rehabilitation
Stephen Farrall

Part Two: Cross-Cultural Stories of Desistance and Rehabilitation

2. Comparing the temporal and spatial dynamics of desistance
Dana Segev

3. Structural ‘ladders’ and the female path to desistance: Comparative lessons from Sweden and England
Linnéa Österman

4. Exploring Processes of Desistance by Ethnic Status: The Confluence of Community, Familial and Individual Processes
Adam Calverley

Part Three: New Places and New Topics in Desistance Research

5. Structural changes and desistance in a developing country: how transformations in the recent Chilean history aided shaping distinctive routes out of crime
Carolina Villagra

6. How does the penal system and criminal involvement impact the desistance process? Trajectory analysis of young offenders in Brazil
Géraldine Bugnon

7. Desistance and the Parisian probation service: The paradox of a limited institutional effect on the processes of desistance
Valerian Benezeth

8. Religiosity and Desistance from Crime
Marwan Mohammed

9. Structuring Desistance: Exploring socio-cultural pathways to change in Ireland
Deirdre Healy

10. Offending, victimisation and desistance: the lives of adult young men from the Sheffield Desistance Study
Joanna Shapland and Anthony Bottoms

Part Four: Turning Ideas Into Workable Policies: The Implementation and Implications of Research Into Desistance From Crime

11. Recovery and communities: The role of structure in stable addiction recovery and desistance
Lauren Hall, David Best and Amy Musgrove

12. Introducing ‘Desistance’ into Criminal Justice Supervision Policies and Practices: Possibilities and Challenges
Anthony Bottoms and Joanna Shapland

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Stephen Farrall is Professor of Criminology at the University of Derby, having previously been Professor of Criminology at the University of Sheffield (2010–2018). As well as his research on desistance from crime, he is well known for his work on the fear of crime and his studies on the long term impacts of Thatcherite social and economic policies on crime.


"Architecture is a product of both structure and culture – two aspects that have been badly neglected in the desistance discussion to date. This fascinating collection of some of the most important voices in the desistance literature may represent the redemption the field needs in this regard. Very exciting work!"

Shadd Maruna, Professor of Criminology, Queen’s University Belfast, UK

"The Architecture of Desistance sheds valuable light on the social forces impacting offending and desistance from crime. Collectively, the contributors challenge traditional perspectives on desistance to more directly consider cultural, historical, institutional, and systematic factors that influence the process of desisting. This timely contribution will enhance the field's cross-national understanding of desistance."

Bianca Bersani, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of Massachusetts, USA