Lack of Empathy and Offending

Darrick Jolliffe and Joseph Murray

in The Future of Criminology

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199917938
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199950430 | DOI:
Lack of Empathy and Offending

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This chapter focuses on the role of empathy to explain offending and the absence of offending in the context of risk and intervention studies. It shows that there is considerable, replicated evidence that poor empathy predicts offending, but that several issues—such as the measurement of empathy and its causal status—remain perplexing. Using the Cambridge Quality Checklist to establish the causal status of empathy, the chapter concludes that past studies on empathy score low on the checklist. Rather than taking this as a defeat, the chapter suggests several ways to advance studies on empathy and its relationship to offending.

Keywords: empathy; offenders; Cambridge Quality Checklist

Chapter.  3099 words. 

Subjects: Criminal Law

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