There are many things about crime that we can only learn from offenders. It is, however, not at all easy to find them and persuade them openly and truthfully to discuss their crimes. Most are difficult to reach, and many are unable or unwilling to provide the answers we need. Nevertheless, the offenders' perspective is vital to knowing and understanding crime: How did a person learn to commit an offence? How precisely was a specific crime enacted? What made the person commit the offence?
Offenders on Offending provides a comprehensive overview of the challenges and possible solutions to the problems posed by offender-based research. The book focuses strongly on issues of methodology and what we can do to maximise the validity of what offenders tell us about their offending. It addresses the strengths and weaknesses of various methods used to elicit information on offending behaviour from offenders, and discusses strategies to obtain the collaboration of offenders and to maximise the validity and reliability of the data.
Leading authorities from around the world present their experiences and insights of work among various types of offender populations.
This valuable new collection demonstrates that offender-based research is a thriving field where exciting developments are taking place. It will be essential reading for a wide audience, from experienced researchers to students who are starting to find there way in offender-based research.
'...this is an extremely interesting and teeming book, with absorbing methodological details, which, at points, transmits the excitement that offender-based research generates. It is a very much alive text in which the authors, coming from or researching a variety of contexts (including Austria, the Czech Republic and the criminologically `exotic' Sri Lanka), share their extensive knowledge on the topic as well as their own experiences and stories....'
'Offenders on Offending: Learning about Crime from Criminals offers a very comprehensive account of the possibilities, problems and solutions that exist in the context of conducting qualitative research with offenders. It is an important collection full of learning and latent common sense-a work that blows open debates on philosophical and practical aspects of research, and is a must-have to every fervent researcher conducting this kind of research, postgraduate students, as well as social research methods teachers. Readers who are not acquainted with relevant research-related literature will find the references section of every chapter a little treasure. All these groups will find it a compulsively readable work, which constantly pushes for re-assessment of ideas, and which highlights why the bulk of criminological research needs to return `back to basics' and re-embrace the offender as the protagonist in the theatre of `crime' and deviance.' -Georgios A. Antonopoulos, Teesside University, in The British Journal of Criminology, vol 52 iss 1
|List of figures and tables||p. vii|
|List of abbreviations||p. ix|
|Notes on contributors||p. xi|
|Setting the stage|
|Learning about crime from criminals: editor's introduction||p. 3|
|Misinformation, misunderstanding and misleading as validity threats to offenders' accounts of offending||p. 13|
|Apprehending criminals: the impact of law on offender-based research||p. 23|
|Interviewing the incarcerated: pitfalls and promises||p. 49|
|Interviewing and validity issues in self-report research with incarcerated offenders: the Quebec inmate survey||p. 68|
|Beyond the interview: complementing and validating accounts of incarcerated violent offenders||p. 84|
|Method, actor and context triangulations: knowing what happened during criminal events and the motivations for getting involved||p. 109|
|Repeat, triangulate and reflect: ethnographic validity in a study on urban minority youth||p. 130|
|Getting good data from people that do bad things: effective methods and techniques for conducting research with hard-to-reach and hidden populations||p. 141|
|Social categories of offenders and researchers|
|The impact of gender when interviewing 'offenders on offending'||p. 161|
|Talking to snakeheads: methodological considerations for research on Chinese human smuggling||p. 184|
|Blue-collar, white-collar: crimes and mistakes||p. 205|
|Learning about the act|
|Research on residential burglary: ways of improving validity and participants' recall when gathering data||p. 231|
|The use of maps in offender interviewing||p. 246|
|Interviewing offenders in a penitentiary environment and the use of mental maps during interviews||p. 273|
|Validating offenders' accounts: learning from offender interviews with bank robbers in Austrian prisons||p. 290|
|Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.|
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Number Of Pages: 322
Published: 1st April 2010
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.11 x 15.49 x 2.29
Weight (kg): 0.61
Edition Number: 1