Delinquency and Juvenile Justice in American Society:  by Randall G. Shelden, Emily I. Troshynski
499 pages, $62.95 list
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Delinquency and Juvenile Justice in American Society
Third Edition
What is delinquency? What are the pathways to offending? What prevention strategies exist? To understand delinquency, we need to overcome stereotypical thinking and implicit biases. This engaging, affordable text explores the impact of gendered, racial, and class attitudes on decisions to arrest, detain, adjudicate, and place youths in the juvenile justice system.

Shelden and Troshynski highlight the social, legal, and political influences on how the public perceives juveniles. They look at the influences of family and schools on delinquency, as well as the impact of gender, trauma, and mental health issues. Discussions of topics such as the school-to-prison pipeline, disproportionate minority contact, and inequality provide a nuanced perspective on delinquency—a critical examination of social policies intended to control delinquency and the populations most likely to enter the juvenile justice system.

The authors also examine the dramatically declining juvenile crime rate and advances in neuroscience that have fostered substantive reforms. These alternatives to confinement are replacing the institutions that have repeatedly produced failure with rehabilitative programs that offer hope for a more promising future.
“The theories are easily explained and the history of juvenile delinquency is well done and very interesting for students. Looking at some of the other social factors that lead to delinquency were very important and a great addition to this text.” — Mike Mendenhall, Ferris State University

"The analysis is informed by a progressive and historical understanding of the nature of American society. Solutions to the problems of delinquency are based on a well-grounded sense of social justice. This will be the text that I will recommend to anyone who wants and needs to know about delinquency and juvenile justice." — Richard Quinney

"Like the price, like the approach and the fact that students are asked to use critical thinking." — Debra Lindberg, Portland State University

"It offers a strong sociological and progressive approach throughout the chapters, a useful blend of gang research into the analysis, and a concise discussion of sociological theories of delinquency. This has the potential to be the best textbook in the field given its discussion of scholarly ideas and justice policies in relation to each other. Also, very readable style for students." — John Wozniak, Western Illinois University

"Nice job on female delinquency—all too often given short shrift." — Elizabeth D. Leonard, Vanguard University

"The interdisciplinary range of citations and relevant excerpts deepen the student's understanding of juvenile justice. The authors adroitly show how issues of racism, ethnicity, and classism were and remain powerful influences in how juvenile justice is dispensed." — Diane Schaefer, University of Michigan, Flint

"Excellent, timely, and current coverage addressing a wide variety of important juvenile justice issues." — Barry M. McKee, Bristol Community College
Table of Contents
The Reality of Juvenile Delinquency / Normal Adolescent Behavior or Deviance? / Conservative, Liberal, and Radical Views of Crime / Understanding Juvenile Delinquency


1. Delinquency and Juvenile Justice in Historical Perspective
The Invention of Childhood / Punishment of Children in the Colonies / The House of Refuge Movement / The Child Saving Movement and the Juvenile Court / Delinquency, Public Schools, and Industry / Twentieth-Century Developments in Juvenile Justice / Into the Twenty-First Century / Summary

2. The Extent of Delinquency
Measuring Delinquency / How Much Delinquency Is There? / Juveniles as Victims / Delinquent Careers / Summary

3. The Nature of Delinquency
Varieties of Delinquent Behavior / Property Crimes / Violent Crimes / Public Order Offenses / Status Offenses / Summary


4. Youth Gangs
A Brief History / What Is a Gang? / How Many Gangs and Gang Members Are There? / Gangs and Crime / Gang and Gang Member Typologies / Gang Classifications / Summary

5. Female Delinquency
The Extent of Female Delinquency / The Nature of Female Delinquency / Summary


6. Individualistic Theories of Delinquency
The Classical School / The Positivist School / Biological Theories / Psychological Theories / Summary

7. Sociological Theories of Delinquency
Social Disorganization/Social Ecology Theory / Strain/Anomie Theory / Cultural Deviance Theories / Control/Social Bond Theory / Social Learning Theory / The Labeling Perspective / Critical/Marxist Perspectives / Summary

8. Delinquency in Context
The Capitalist Economic System / The Development of the Underclass / Poverty and Family Structure / Effects of Economic Changes on Delinquency / The Death of Childhood in the Inner Cities / Summary

9. Delinquency and the Family
The Family in Contemporary Society / The Role of the Family in Delinquency / The Social Context of the Family / Girl Offenders and Their Families / Children with Parents in Prison / Summary

10. Schools and Delinquency
Schooling in a Class Society / Schools as "Day Prisons" / The School to Prison Pipeline / How Safe Are Schools? / Reinforcing Class and Race Inequality / Tracking / School Failure and Delinquency / Summary


11. Processing Offenders through the Juvenile Justice System
Juvenile Laws / The Rights of Juveniles / Juvenile Court: The Structure / Juvenile Justice: The Process / Juvenile Court Processing / Keeping Offenders from Going Deeper into the System / Probation / Giving Up on Delinquent Youth: Transfer to Adult Court / Summary

12. Prisons or "Correctional" Institutions
What's in a Name? / Commitment to an Institution / Short-Term Facilities / Long-Term Facilities / Institutional Populations / Will Budget Necessities Lead to Improvement? / Reentry / Summary

13. The Double Standard of Juvenile Justice
Normative Beliefs about Gender / The Child-Saving Movement and the Juvenile Court / The Juvenile Court and the Double Standard of Juvenile Justice / Deinstitutionalization and Judicial Paternalism / Continuing Evidence of Gender Bias / Summary

14. Some Sensible Solutions
We Need a New Paradigm / Radical Nonintervention / Intervention Typologies / Missouri's Model System of Juvenile Justice / The Detention Diversion Advocacy Project / Models for Change / What about Girls? / Other Model Programs / Broad-Based National Strategies / Some Closing Words / Summary

Glossary of Juvenile Justice Terms