Do minority and female offenders have distinct "criminal personalities"?: A critique of Yochelson-Samenow's theory of criminality

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Yochelson and Samenow's approach to treating and/or rehabilitating juvenile and adult offenders has become very popular with mental health and criminal justice practitioners, particularly for those working in juvenile or adult correctional settings. Their approach has evolved into the most publicized cognitive therapy for treating antisocial behavior. The conceptual and theoretical weaknesses of Yochelson and Samenow's work notwithstanding, the author focuses on the methodological weaknesses, giving special attention to their implications for practitioners working with incarcerated minority and female offenders. Several potential areas of research and practice for psychological criminology, mental health, and criminal justice are proposed.

Keywords: Cognitive therapy; Criminal personality; Female offenders; Juvenile and adult offenders; Minority offenders; Yochelson-Samenow's theory

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Psychology Department, Division of Social Sciences, Essex County College, USA

Publication date: September 1, 2003

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