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UNT CJUS 4650 - Biases and the Origins of Victimology

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CJUS 4650 1st Edition Lecture 2Outline of Last Lecture I. The Definition of VictimologyII. Primary and Secondary VictimsIII. Victim or Offender?IV. Victims Being UsedOutline of Current Lecture II. Three Types of BiasesIII. Victimology’s Bad ReputationIV. Origins of VictimologyV. Milestones of VictimologyCurrent LectureThe Challenge of Objectivity- Victimological research must tell the whole truth regardless of who is disappointed or insulted- 3 types of biases undermine the ability of any social scientist to achieve objectivityThree Types of Bias1. May arise from personal experience, taking the form of individual preferences and prejudices2. Derives from the history of the discipline itself. Pioneer in the study of victimology first introduced the concept of victim blaming. Today, most victimologists are pro-victim3. A subtle bias traced back to the mood of the timesa. 60s-70s: A demand for government to devise ways to help victims get back on their feet financially, medically and emotionallyb. 80s: A theme of self-reliance and a reduction in government social spending and tax cutting gained popularityVictimology’s Undeserved Bad Reputation- Victimology during the 90s and into the 20th century has become a “dirty word”- Do not confuse “victimism” and “victimology”- Victimology is often misused, when the author intends to describe victimismThese notes represent a detailed interpretation of the professor’s lecture. GradeBuddy is best used as a supplement to your own notes, not as a substitute.- Common victimhood: victimism- Victimology is a new academic discipline that only meant “the study of victims”- It is focused on the research about people harmed by criminals- It does not impose a partisan position of view or a set of predictably biased conclusions- The ideology of “victimism” is a coherent, integrated set of beliefsOrigins of Victimology- Benjamin Mendelsohno “Father of Victimology”- Significant gains in the U.S. when the President’s commission on Law Enforcement and the Administration of Justice urged criminologists to pay more attention to victims Milestones of Victimology- By the 1970s victimology became a recognized field of study- By 1990, 240 colleges offered courses in victimology- Most states passed crime victim rights amendments to their state constitution- 2004: Congress enacts the Crime Victims’ Rights Act which provides for fair treatment and opportunities for input in federal court


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