Anticipated Shaming and Criminal Offending
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Criminological research suggests that informal sanctions like shaming may have a stronger influence on crime than do formal sanctions, but research has yet to examine whether anticipated shaming may mediate the relationship between crime and variables derived from dominant micro-level theories. The present paper argues that variables derived from learning, control, strain, and deterrence theories influence criminal offending via their effect on anticipated shaming. Using data collected from a sample of young adults, results from both tobit and path analyses suggest that the prospect of shaming among friends and family bears a stronger direct relation to criminal intent than do more commonly examined variables and that the effect of such variables on criminal intent is largely indirect, mediated by anticipated shaming. We therefore suggest that crime control efforts might benefit from incorporating a greater role for Braithwaite's conception of reintegrative shaming.
Journal of Criminal Justice