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  • Contents
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This collection of original essays is an innovative, effective way to teach crime theory to undergraduates. Each essay brings an important crime theory to life by applying that theory to a current crime event or topic of interest to students. An original introductory essay by Don Gibbons explains the origins of these different explanations for criminal behavior, and how they are similar to and different from one another.

The Systemic Theory of Neighborhood Crime Rates
The systemic theory of neighborhood crime rates
ROBERT J.BURSIKJR.

The American public consistently has been exposed to messages suggesting that the main cause of crime is an inability for some people to “just say no” when criminal opportunities present themselves. This belief fosters the idea that crime and delinquency prevention activities should focus almost exclusively on those social-psychological attributes that put an individual at risk. Such impressions are strongly reinforced by the extensive involvement of law enforcement agencies in popular school-based programs such as the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE), which in part attempts to enhance the self-esteem that is assumed to be necessary for students to resist pressures to use illegal substances (Ringwalt et al. 1994). However, although such ...

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