Desistance from Sexual Offending: Narratives of Retirement, Regulation and Recovery

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Harris, Danielle
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2017
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Abstract

This book describes the complex process of desistance from sexual crime as told by 74 men incarcerated for sexual offenses and released back into the community. Unlike much of the research on this topic, Harris places strong emphasis on how men who have committed serious sexual offenses come to stop offending and end their ‘criminal career’. Drawing on in-depth interviews, Harris outlines three main strategies that the men employ in order to pursue offense-free lives. The Retirement Strategy is divided into those who appear to simply ‘resign’ and those who go on to ‘rebuild’ their lives. The Regulation Strategy characterizes desistance as a product of one’s ability to navigate increasingly restrictive legislation (‘restricted,’ ‘rehearsed,’ ‘resistant,’ and ‘reclusive’ desistance). The men who describe their desistance in terms of Recovery do so either through ‘rehabilitation’ or through ‘resilience.’ This original and engaging study will be of great interest not only to academics who study sexual aggression but also those who have survived sexual abuse themselves, and anyone working with survivors of sexual abuse, individuals convicted of sexual offenses, their families, and their communities.

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Criminology not elsewhere classified
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