Long-held myths defining the sources of and cures for crime are shattered in this ground-breaking book - and a chilling profile of today's criminal emerges.
©1984, 2004 Stanton Samenow (P)2014 Listening Library
I really enjoyed this book because it offers the listener a contrasting view of the causes of criminal behavior.
For me personally, it had allowed me a better understanding of offenders that, despite many opportunities for change, they continue to make poor decisions. I recommend this book for anyone in corrections.
Maybe if it was more limited on its scope. I understand Samenow's approach to what causes crime, especially after decades of being exposed to criminals. However, he is quick to dismiss things out of his personal experiences when research supports those things. If he sticks to his own research and doesn't try to poorly attack others, I think I would.
It was his (and Yokelson's) research and experiences. I would say 80% of his book was fantastic, the 20% is described in the comments below.
Yes, but the narrator quickly became a huge distraction when quoting things inmates say. Every inmate had the same annoyed whiny voice that was quite distracting.
Overall I think most of what he has discovered is absolutely fantastic in terms of research into criminal behavior. However, there are some large issues I have with this book:
He quickly and selectively dismisses many, or all other, criminology theories of crime. It is as if he has a selective and biased view towards them and doesn't quite fully understand what they, how they came to be, or that they are not meant to be 100% explanations of all or most crime. It is really hard to dismiss those theories since they have all gone through much research and study, not to mention have been replicated numerous times as well. Those did not come from some yahoo in his basement who wanted an excuse for crime, they came from highly educated and experienced people who genuinely found more than just correlations.
He also appears to trivialize certain things, such as terrorism and those who possess child pornography (suggests those who only possess child pornography be paroled and not jailed when they actually contribute to the more serious crimes being committed to get the pornography). Not really sure why he gets involved this much into the criminal justice system when he is a psychologist.
Needs to stay away from the rock star superhero psychic profiliers as references for certain information.
I think his research is fantastic if he were just staying in his lane. He should approach as just a psychologist, nothing more.
if the author took only one topic at a time. it is not only confusing but it doesn't go anywhere.
Maybe not the book was boring.
I liked the topic of the book but disliked how they explained the topic.
Disappointment because it a book with no background i don't see how people could view this book being interesting it is very boring.
It is an sincere effort to understand criminal mind.The author puts all his experience to tell us about criminal mind.May be the brain functions in such a complex manner that it is difficult to decipher all its patterns.
The remedies suggested are practical and with lots of common sense.The book is read well to keep up the interest in the subject.
Nothing can save this book, it is antiquated and assumes that everyone convicted of a crime is a criminally minded human being that like an alcoholic can never recover only maintain. Ironically at that: considering that when it's time to discuss reformed convicts supporting convicts that need to reform. The author claims that method/way of thinking to be equal to saying that a person who has been to a dentist can perform dental work. A terrible analogy in the first place made far far worse by suggesting that a human is so non-dynamic that their behavior is like a tooth, once it's broken it's broken forever. It may in fact be harder to deal with than a tooth in so much as we cannot remove it when all else is failing. To suggest in the face of the resent case studies from programs in the prison system where success begets success is ludicrous.
I wouldn't waste this much time on anything else written by Samenow. I was wondering at points in this book if this might not be a pen-name behind which Debbie Downer, Eeyore, and Rush Limbaugh are co-penning at the behest of some executives in private capital that are heavily invested in maintaining or increasing the prison population.
If this has been less of a life and death topic for so many people I would have thought this was hilarious satire. He reads it with tones that are unbelievable. If the book uses 95% truth to try to create a straw man arguments by presenting correlation as causation, then then Mark's reading of it balance is out to 50% facts 50% bullshit by adding in ridiculous intonations.
To completely discount everything in the book as made up would be easy, considering the few raw data points that I know anything about were off by magnitudes. The one that stuck out most to me was Bernie Madoff. The author claims Madoff defrauded his clients of "millions of dollars." Not even 10's of millions or 100's of millions when in fact the damages were in the "billions." Also something like fraud has cost elderly people as much as 11 million dollars in one year and citing AARP. I don't care to sit here and research it, but really? $11M? It's probably in the many 100's of millions.
If you're even vaguely hopeful of change, don't read this book and if you read it anyway, think of Gandhi or Martin Luther King Jr., if they had believed that changing people was impossible, where would the world be today? This is a 30 year old book poorly revised to fit today's criminals. It should be pulled off of the shelves of book stores and archived for research on the flawed thinking of yesterday only.
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