SAGE Journal Articles

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Journal Article 1: Osgood, D. Wayne. (2005). Making sense of crime and the life course. The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 602, 196-211.

Abstract: This article reflects on the progress of research on developmental and life-course criminology, comments on the status of some unresolved issues, and offers recommendations for the future. The first sections relate these articles and the current status of the field to two themes from the criminal careers debate of the 1980s and 1990s: generalization versus disaggregation as approaches to advancing science and continuous versus categorical conceptions of variation in criminal careers. The article also discusses the use of the growth curve models that are so prominent in developmental and life-span research, emphasizing the aspects of change that they do and do not capture, pointing out implications of that limitation for the need for expanding theories and models of change, and explaining the simple steps needed to enhance growth curve models to accomplish that purpose.

Journal Article 2: Dobash, R. P., Dobash, R. E., Cavanagh, K., Smith, D., & Medina-Ariza, J. (2007). Onset of offending and life course among men convicted of murder. Homicide Studies, 11, 243-271.

Abstract: Although the developmental perspective has become a leading paradigm in criminology, little attention has been paid to the onset of offending and life course of murderers within this tradition. We use bivariate and Multiple Correspondence Analysis to investigate the life course and criminal careers of three onset groups among a UK sample of 786 men convicted of murder. The early-onset group (20% of the sample) is more likely to have experienced significant problems in childhood and adulthood. The no-offending group (10% of the sample) is the least likely to have had problematic backgrounds. The childhoods of the late-onset group (67% of the sample) resemble the no-offending group (with few problems) but in adulthood they more closely resemble the early-onset group (with many problems). The implications of these findings for developmental criminology and homicide research are discussed.