Moral disengagement in gang versus non-Gang delinquents

Dyberg-Tengroth, M.F.W. (2019) Moral disengagement in gang versus non-Gang delinquents. DForenPsy thesis, University of Nottingham.

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This thesis explores moral disengagement and the proposed concept of discriminant moral disengagement (DMD) in gang versus non-gang delinquents in England. Chapter One introduces moral disengagement and how it pertains to gangs in the United Kingdom, then sets out the aims and the content of this thesis. A systematic review of violence-targeted interventions for gang youth utilising a moral-component is presented. The review exposes the lack of consistent language in the area and the failure of successful violence interventions with moral components to be specialised for a gang population or applied in England, despite increased interest in moral disengagement as a topic (Chapter Two).

The next two chapters present research findings from an empirical study of moral disengagement in gang versus non-gang delinquents. Chapter Three examines general moral disengagement across these two populations as well as DMD towards outgroups. DMD refers to the proposed process whereby cognitive discrimination is applied to moral disengagement in certain scenarios or towards particular populations, a process which has been alluded to but never named or specifically studied within this context before. Results confirmed Alleyne and Wood’s findings that moral disengagement was not significantly related to gang membership; however, exploratory results indicated that DMD towards outgroups is significantly related to gang membership (2010). The next section examines gang versus non-gang attitudes towards women and DMD towards females (Chapter Four). Gang members were not found to differ significantly from non-gang delinquents on either scale, but possible/affiliate gang members were. Both Chapters Three and Four discuss their findings, implications, limitations, and future directions for research.

This is followed up by a psychometric critique of gang membership measures with a focus on the Eurogang Youth Survey and the Eurogang Definition Instrument, highlighting the difficulties of critiquing such measures beyond the definitional debate within gang research (Weerman et al., 2009; Weerman et al., 2010).

Chapter Six offers a conclusion, summarising each section’s main points, their cumulative meaning, and potential impact.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (DForenPsy)
Supervisors: Egan, Vincent
Keywords: Discriminant moral disengagement; Violence-targeted interventions; elinquents
Subjects: H Social sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Medicine
Item ID: 56220
Depositing User: Dyberg, Miriam
Date Deposited: 19 Jul 2019 04:40
Last Modified: 06 May 2020 09:47

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