Explanations about crime and psychological distress in ethnic minority and white victims of crime: a qualitative exploration

Lloyd Carson, Malcolm D. MacLeod

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study reports the findings of a qualitative analysis of ethnic minority crime victims' causal explanations of crime. The analysis indicated that usage of ascriptions involving ‘race’ or ‘racism’ appeared to be associated with relatively poor psychological adjustment. Usage of racial explanations did not, however, appear to be related to the type of incident, the seriousness of the incident, or satisfaction with the police response. It is suggested that crime explanations embodying immutable aspects of the self, such as ethnicity, might prevent adjustment, whereas those incorporating mutable features of the self or circumstances might act as effective coping strategies by allowing victims to perceive the incident as random or temporary and therefore unlikely to recur. This interpretation was supported by an analysis of the types of explanation utilized by distressed and non-distressed White victims in a matched control group. These findings are discussed in relation to models of attributional activity, coping and psychological status. Finally, their practical applications are considered.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)361-375
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Community and Applied Social Psychology
Volume7
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1997

Fingerprint

Crime Victims
Crime
national minority
offense
Psychology
Social Adjustment
Racism
incident
Ego
Police
coping
Research Design
Control Groups
racism
police
ethnicity
interpretation
Group
Emotional Adjustment

Cite this

@article{f061741d53614709ae13139488e4a101,
title = "Explanations about crime and psychological distress in ethnic minority and white victims of crime: a qualitative exploration",
abstract = "This study reports the findings of a qualitative analysis of ethnic minority crime victims' causal explanations of crime. The analysis indicated that usage of ascriptions involving ‘race’ or ‘racism’ appeared to be associated with relatively poor psychological adjustment. Usage of racial explanations did not, however, appear to be related to the type of incident, the seriousness of the incident, or satisfaction with the police response. It is suggested that crime explanations embodying immutable aspects of the self, such as ethnicity, might prevent adjustment, whereas those incorporating mutable features of the self or circumstances might act as effective coping strategies by allowing victims to perceive the incident as random or temporary and therefore unlikely to recur. This interpretation was supported by an analysis of the types of explanation utilized by distressed and non-distressed White victims in a matched control group. These findings are discussed in relation to models of attributional activity, coping and psychological status. Finally, their practical applications are considered.",
author = "Lloyd Carson and MacLeod, {Malcolm D.}",
year = "1997",
month = "12",
doi = "10.1002/(SICI)1099-1298(199712)7:5<361::AID-CASP430>3.0.CO;2-G",
language = "English",
volume = "7",
pages = "361--375",
journal = "Journal of Community and Applied Social Psychology",
issn = "1052-9284",
publisher = "John Wiley and Sons Ltd",
number = "5",

}

Explanations about crime and psychological distress in ethnic minority and white victims of crime : a qualitative exploration. / Carson, Lloyd; MacLeod, Malcolm D.

In: Journal of Community and Applied Social Psychology, Vol. 7, No. 5, 12.1997, p. 361-375.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Explanations about crime and psychological distress in ethnic minority and white victims of crime

T2 - a qualitative exploration

AU - Carson, Lloyd

AU - MacLeod, Malcolm D.

PY - 1997/12

Y1 - 1997/12

N2 - This study reports the findings of a qualitative analysis of ethnic minority crime victims' causal explanations of crime. The analysis indicated that usage of ascriptions involving ‘race’ or ‘racism’ appeared to be associated with relatively poor psychological adjustment. Usage of racial explanations did not, however, appear to be related to the type of incident, the seriousness of the incident, or satisfaction with the police response. It is suggested that crime explanations embodying immutable aspects of the self, such as ethnicity, might prevent adjustment, whereas those incorporating mutable features of the self or circumstances might act as effective coping strategies by allowing victims to perceive the incident as random or temporary and therefore unlikely to recur. This interpretation was supported by an analysis of the types of explanation utilized by distressed and non-distressed White victims in a matched control group. These findings are discussed in relation to models of attributional activity, coping and psychological status. Finally, their practical applications are considered.

AB - This study reports the findings of a qualitative analysis of ethnic minority crime victims' causal explanations of crime. The analysis indicated that usage of ascriptions involving ‘race’ or ‘racism’ appeared to be associated with relatively poor psychological adjustment. Usage of racial explanations did not, however, appear to be related to the type of incident, the seriousness of the incident, or satisfaction with the police response. It is suggested that crime explanations embodying immutable aspects of the self, such as ethnicity, might prevent adjustment, whereas those incorporating mutable features of the self or circumstances might act as effective coping strategies by allowing victims to perceive the incident as random or temporary and therefore unlikely to recur. This interpretation was supported by an analysis of the types of explanation utilized by distressed and non-distressed White victims in a matched control group. These findings are discussed in relation to models of attributional activity, coping and psychological status. Finally, their practical applications are considered.

U2 - 10.1002/(SICI)1099-1298(199712)7:5<361::AID-CASP430>3.0.CO;2-G

DO - 10.1002/(SICI)1099-1298(199712)7:5<361::AID-CASP430>3.0.CO;2-G

M3 - Article

VL - 7

SP - 361

EP - 375

JO - Journal of Community and Applied Social Psychology

JF - Journal of Community and Applied Social Psychology

SN - 1052-9284

IS - 5

ER -