Boscoville and social adjustment

Karnouk, Marlene (1973) Boscoville and social adjustment. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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This thesis reports data on a study of the attitudes of juvenile delinquents committed to a reform school in Quebec called "Boscoville." It also considers the rehabilitation policies associated with these attitudes and the problem of social adjustment of juveniles following their release from the centre. The chief aim of the investigation was the generation of a grounded theory of commitment to delinquency. -- The phenomenon of juvenile delinquency is approached from the point of view of the subjective career; men create special realities through a process of interpretation of events directly connected with their major identities. Using .this principle as a starting point, one can clearly distinguish between two basic types of delinquency. -- 1. Drift: the life of the individual is not organized around crime nor does lawbreaking become part of his identity. Juveniles in drift do not share the background traits that characterize most delinquents in Boscoville such as inadequate family relations, failure in school, and repeated deviant activities. Lawbreaking to them is not a permanent solution to life's problems. -- 2. Commitment: the individual becomes aware of his association with deviance when he recognizes that he is forced into a career within it. Juveniles who identify thus deviance share certain attitudes towards their major life experiences (some of which were investigated in this study). They internalize the community definitions of deviance and live up to that image, so that regardless of the differences in their personal identities, they share a social identity based on the deviant role they play. -- The attitudes of juvenile delinquents in drift differ from the attitudes of juveniles who are attached to deviance. An investigation of those attitudes and their causes may help guide rehabilitation favourable to the inmate's social adjustment. Indeed, Boscoville eliminates the deviant identities of its inmates, by offering them the possibility of reentering the conventional world by enhancing their self-images and by engendering an awareness of the world and its time-space relationships. -- Rehabilitation in Boscoville, however, does not necessarily eliminate lawbreaking activities motivated by for financial gain. In fact, an awareness of the consequences of one's action also makes one more conscious of the implications of one's criminal action. Boscoville can help an individual become better adjusted to the world he lives in, even though it may help some become better thieves.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 10761
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 122-124.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Sociology
Date: 1973
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Quebec
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Juvenile delinquency; Juvenile detention homes--Quebec (Province)

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