Violent Crime: Clinical and Social Implications

SAGE Publications
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Offering a unique and interdisciplinary focus on the roots of violence, Violent Crime: Clinical and Social Implications explores cutting-edge research on the etiology, nature, assessment, and treatment of individuals who commit violent crimes. This edited volume covers the foundations of criminal behavior, offers a balanced discussion of both environmental and biological research, and includes articles written by top researchers and scholars in the field. In Part I, Violent Crime examines the origins of violence, including family and other social factors, media violence, genetics, biochemistry, and head injuries. Part II delves into research on specific subgroups of offenders, including sex offenders, domestic violence perpetrators, murderers, and serial murderers. Part III focuses on issues related to victimology, prevention, and the treatment of violent offenders.

Key Features
  • Draws from a wide range of disciplines, including criminology, sociology, biology, medical science, genetics, clinical psychology, and psychiatry
  • Introduces students to cutting-edge research on genetic, biochemical, and traumatic brain injury-related causes and correlates of violent crime
  • Presents a systematic introduction to the current state of the field (and its likely future) through articles from leading researchers in the various subfields of violent crime
  • Includes case studies with salient, fascinating examples of actual crimes and criminals to help students understand key points
  • Offers an international focus, with authors from Canada, England, Greece, and Spain, as well as from the United States
  • Provides end-of-chapter learning aids, including summaries, discussion questions, Internet resources, and suggestions for further reading

A must-read for any student of criminological research, Violent Crime: Clinical and Social Implications can be used as a core or supplementary text in undergraduate and graduate courses on Violent Crime, Interpersonal Violence, and Social Deviance.
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About the author

Christopher J. Ferguson is an Associate Professor and Department Chair of Psychology at Stetson University. He has published numerous peer-reviewed articles on the topic of video game and other media violence. His research has generally not indicated significant associations with harmful outcomes in children due to media violence exposure. He has served as Guest Editor for two American Psychological Association journals on the topic of video games. In 2013, he was awarded an early-career scientist award from the Media Psychology division of the American Psychological Association. He lives near Orlando, Florida, with his wife and son.

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Additional Information

Publisher
SAGE Publications
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Published on
Jan 13, 2009
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Pages
416
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ISBN
9781483374598
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Language
English
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Genres
Social Science / Criminology
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Patrick M. Markey
In family rooms across America, millions of children and teenagers are playing video games, such as Call of Duty, Halo, and Grand Theft Auto, roaming violent virtual worlds—with virtual guns in their hands.

In what sometimes seems like an increasingly violent world, it’s only natural to worry about the effects of all this pixelated gore. But is that concern misplaced? Authors and psychologists Patrick M. Markey and Christopher J. Ferguson say it is.

The media and politicians have been sounding the alarm for years, and with every fresh tragedy involving a young perpetrator comes another flurry of articles about the dangers of violent media. The problem is this: Their fear isn’t supported by the evidence. In fact, unlike the video game–trained murder machines depicted in the press, school shooters are actually less likely to be interested in violent games than their peers. In reality, most well-adjusted children and teenagers play violent video games, all without ever exhibiting violent behavior in real life. What’s more, spikes in sales of violent games actually correspond to decreased rates of violent crime.

If that surprises you, you’re not alone—the national dialogue on games and violence has been hopelessly biased. But that’s beginning to change. Scholars are finding that not only are violent games not one of society’s great evils, they may even be a force for good.

In Moral Combat, Markey and Ferguson explore how video games—even the bloodiest—can have a positive impact on everything from social skills to stress, and may even make us more morally sensitive. Tracing the rise of violent games from arcades to online deathmatches, they have spent years on the front lines of the video game debate and now offer a comprehensive overview of the scientific research on gaming. With humor, complete honesty, and extensive research, they separate the myth from the medium.

Moral Combat is an irreverent and informative guide to the worries—and wonders—of our violent virtual world.
Patrick M. Markey
In family rooms across America, millions of children and teenagers are playing video games, such as Call of Duty, Halo, and Grand Theft Auto, roaming violent virtual worlds—with virtual guns in their hands.

In what sometimes seems like an increasingly violent world, it’s only natural to worry about the effects of all this pixelated gore. But is that concern misplaced? Authors and psychologists Patrick M. Markey and Christopher J. Ferguson say it is.

The media and politicians have been sounding the alarm for years, and with every fresh tragedy involving a young perpetrator comes another flurry of articles about the dangers of violent media. The problem is this: Their fear isn’t supported by the evidence. In fact, unlike the video game–trained murder machines depicted in the press, school shooters are actually less likely to be interested in violent games than their peers. In reality, most well-adjusted children and teenagers play violent video games, all without ever exhibiting violent behavior in real life. What’s more, spikes in sales of violent games actually correspond to decreased rates of violent crime.

If that surprises you, you’re not alone—the national dialogue on games and violence has been hopelessly biased. But that’s beginning to change. Scholars are finding that not only are violent games not one of society’s great evils, they may even be a force for good.

In Moral Combat, Markey and Ferguson explore how video games—even the bloodiest—can have a positive impact on everything from social skills to stress, and may even make us more morally sensitive. Tracing the rise of violent games from arcades to online deathmatches, they have spent years on the front lines of the video game debate and now offer a comprehensive overview of the scientific research on gaming. With humor, complete honesty, and extensive research, they separate the myth from the medium.

Moral Combat is an irreverent and informative guide to the worries—and wonders—of our violent virtual world.
Christopher J Ferguson
A campus shooting. A gang assault. A school bus ambush. With each successive event, fingers are pointed at the usual suspects: violent films, bloody video games, explicit web sites. But to what extent can—or should—the media be implicated in youth crime? And are today's sophisticated young people really that susceptible to their influence?

Adolescents, Crime, and the Media critically examines perceptions of these phenomena through the lens of the ongoing relationship between generations of adults and youth. A wealth of research findings transcends the standard nature/nurture debate, analyzing media effects on young people's behavior, brain development in adolescence, ways adults can be misled about youth’s participation in criminal acts, and how science can be manipulated by prevailing attitudes toward youth. The author strikes a necessary balance between the viewpoints of media providers and those seeking to restrict media or young people's access to them. And the book brings scientific and intellectual rigor to culturally and politically charged issues as it covers:

Violence in the media.Media portrayals of crime and youth.Research on violent television programs, video games, and other media as causes of crime.Effects of pornography on behavior.Public policy, censorship, and First Amendment issues.

Adolescents, Crime, and the Media is an essential resource for researchers, graduate students, professionals, and clinicians across such interrelated disciplines as developmental psychology, sociology, educational policy, criminology/criminal justice, child and school psychology, and media law.

Christopher J. Ferguson, PhD
Provides an interdisciplinary overview and critical examination of how individuals are affected by mass media

There are few areas of modern social science that are as fiercely debated as media psychology. Written by one of the foremost experts on the topic, this is a concise overview of what is knownóand not knownóabout how individuals are affected by and interact with various forms of mass media. The book critically examines research from cognitive, social, developmental, biological, and evolutionary approaches to psychology and addresses the interplay between media consumption and viewer behavior in such realms as advertising, body image, sex, and violence. Distinguished by its examination of research from a scientifically objective position, the book offers students not only current knowledge of media psychology but also the tools to challenge commonly held assumptions from popular advocacy and ideology.

This text cuts across different psychological approaches to studying how individuals are affected by mass media and includes research from criminal justice and sociology. It considers critical debates in media psychology and how debates in science themselves can be influenced by processes such as ìmoral panic.î Written in a lively, accessible manner, the book draws upon engaging examples such as Photoshopped model controversies, dubious advertising practices, and attempts to blame violent crimes on media to illustrate scholarly principles. Throughout, data from research studies is related back toreal-world phenomena such as violence rates, advertising dollars spent, or changes in the news media. Written for upper level undergraduate and graduate students studying media psychology, the text will also be of value to professionals in psychology, sociology and criminal justice as well as individuals involved in public policy as it relates to media effects.

Key Features:

Offers an objective, interdisciplinary approach to understanding media and behavior Draws from cognitive, social, developmental, and biological psychology, as well as criminal justice research and sociology Challenges the conclusions drawn from research to foster critical thinking Written in a lively, accessible writing style with engaging examples grounded in research

About the Author

Christopher J. Ferguson, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist and department chair of psychology at Stetson University in DeLand, FL. He has done extensive research on the effects of media in realms ranging from video game and television violence effects, to body image to advertising effects. He has also examined how methodological issues, researcher expectancies and questionable researcher practices, and societal pressures and incentives can create false positives in media psychology. Clinically, he has done extensive work with criminal justice populations including juvenile offenders, adult inmates and child protective services.

Aside from his academic work, Chris is the author of a mystery novel, Suicide Kings, which follows a young woman in Renaissance Florence investigating her motherís death. He has also published a number of short stories, mainly in speculative fiction. He lives near Orlando with his wife and young son.

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