The Social Background of Delinquency  book cover
1st Edition

The Social Background of Delinquency

  • Available for pre-order on March 27, 2023. Item will ship after April 17, 2023
ISBN 9781032375564
April 17, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
322 Pages

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Book Description

Written in 1954 and published here for the first time, The Social Background of Delinquency deals with the social climate in which juvenile delinquency crops up time after time. It examines ‘bad’ behaviour among people who could otherwise be classed as ‘normal’ members of ordinary English society. It attempts to explore certain aspects of the sub-cultures within respectable society which appear to breed behaviour officially classed as ‘delinquent’. The research is based on a working-class town in the Midlands with a high proportion of miners and observes a pair of similar streets in five areas of the town. Each pair of streets containing one delinquency-free and one with a history of trouble. Not content with a mere survey, the research design is multifaceted and includes ethnographic observations, key informant interviews, personal history analyses and 'the playroom method' explicitly designed to ascertain children's views. The findings are reported here and represent a snapshot of life in the 1950s.

Table of Contents

New Foreword John Goodwin.  Foreword.  Introduction.  Part 1: The Object of the Research.  Part 2: The Selected Town – Radby.  Part 3: The Field of Study.  A. Method.  B. Facts Relating to the Five Delinquency Areas.  C. Pilot Survey.  D. Dyke Street and Gladstone Road – A Comparison.  E. Carnation Street Area and the Knoll Estate. Introduction to the 5-point Scale Range.  F. The 5-point Scale Range of Households.  Part 4: Conclusions.  Part 5: Appendices.  A. Children’s Paintings and Writings.  B. Interviewing Schedule.  C. Map of Radby.

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Pearl Jephcott (1900-1980) was based at the University of Nottingham at the time of writing in 1954.


From the New Foreword: "The Social Background of Delinquency is more than a simple study of delinquency. It is a rich, detailed study of a diachronic whole that deserves recognition."