In recognition of the tenth anniversary of Crime Times, we are foregoing our usual book review page and instead offering a selection of quotes from the books reviewed by Crime Times over the past decade:
"The evidence for a substantial heritability for IQ is no longer seriously in doubt. Personality has likewise been shown to have significant genetic involvement…. Inasmuch as criminal behavior is associated with intelligence and personality, and inasmuch as personality and intelligence have genetic influences on them, then it follows logically, as night follows day, that criminal behavior has genetic ingredients."
R.J. Herrnstein in Crime, edited by James Q. Wilson and Joan Petersilia (reviewed in Crime Times, 1995, Vol. 1, No. 3)
"The reality is that there are no genes for crime as such; rather, there are genes that code for proteins and enzymes that can influence physiological processes which can in turn predispose an individual toward crime."
The Psychopathology of Crime by Adrian Raine (reviewed in Crime Times, 1995, Vol. 1, No. 4)
"Future research should be conducted by an interdisciplinary team composed of a nutritionist, a criminologist, a physician, a correctional research specialist, and a neurophysiologist."
Diana H. Fishbein and Susan E. Pease in The Psychobiology of Aggression, edited by Marc Hillbrand and Nathaniel J. Pallone (reviewed in Crime Times, 1996, Vol. 2, No. 3)
"A psychiatrist can always fish for some underlying problem and spot conflict in any family. But to conclude that criminal behavior stems from obvious family psychopathology is a mistake."
Inside the Criminal Mind by Stanton Samenow (reviewed in Crime Times, 1996, Vol. 2, No. 4)
"It is only within the relatively recent past that major technological advances in the neurosciences have made it possible to record brain activity and later to map that activity through technologically powerful imaging devices. Concomitantly, an explosion of knowledge in psychopharmacology and psychoendocrinology has yielded new understandings of a panoply of interactions between brain morphology and functioning, neurochemistry, and emotional and behavioral disorder."
Tinder-Box Criminal Aggression by Nathaniel J. Pallone and James J. Hennessy (reviewed in Crime Times, 1997, Vol. 3, No. 1)
"Over the years it has become increasingly clear.... that most sentences intended to deter violent crimes ignore the state of mind most perpetrators are in at the time of their violent acts. In theory punishment as a deterrent makes sense; in reality it is often irrelevant."
Guilty by Reason of Insanity by Dorothy Otnow Lewis (reviewed in Crime Times, 1999, Vol. 5, No. 2)
"ADD used to be thought of as a disorder of hyperactive boys who outgrew it before puberty. We now know that most people with ADD do not outgrow the symptoms of this disorder and that it frequently occurs in girls and women. It is estimated that ADD affects seventeen million Americans."
Change Your Brain, Change Your Life by Daniel G. Amen (reviewed in Crime Times, 1999, Vol. 5, No. 3)
"Already, what we know about the biological and chemical roots of violence, from neurotransmitter levels to brain damage and dysfunction, represents a severe problem for the moralist and the penologist. How free is our will, when our internal mechanisms deny us the concept of conscience? How should we be punished, when our actions are in great degree beyond our control?"
Anne Moir and David Jessel in A Mind to Crime (reviewed in Crime Times, 1999, Vol. 5, No. 4)
"Although relatives and friends of an antisocial need to think about how their behavior might influence him, they also should realize that his disorder probably is rooted in biological processes beyond their control. Likewise, they should not hold themselves responsible if treatment fails."
Bad Boys, Bad Men by Donald Black (reviewed in Crime Times, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 1)
"We legal professionals have deluded the public by our silence (or worse, our ignorance) into thinking that punishment and a base desire for revenge will somehow stop crime. Politicians have done worse and routinely capitalize on "toughness" by proposing long-term imprisonment as a panacea for crime control. Unfortunately, it is not. We can no longer ignore the problem of a correction system that does not correct and a justice delivery system that is not just."
Sentencing: As I See It by Judge Richard I. Nygaard (reviewed in Crime Times, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 2)
"(T)here is good evidence that most behaviors, especially in humans, are genetically complex; that is, they are influenced by not just one gene, but by many."
Are We Hardwired? by William Clark and Michael Grunstein (reviewed in Crime Times, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 4)
"Scientists still do not have a complete understanding of how PCBs impair neurological development in the womb and early in life, but emerging evidence suggests that the ability of PCBs to cause brain damage stems in part from disruption to another component of the endocrine system, thyroid hormones."
Our Stolen Future by Theo Colborn, Dianne Dumanoski, and John Peterson Myers (reviewed in Crime Times, 2002, Vol. 8, No. 4)
"(T)he evidence is overwhelming that every aspect of our mental lives depends entirely on physiological events in the tissues of the brain."
The Blank Slate by Steven Pinker (reviewed in Crime Times, 2003, Vol. 9, No. 2)
"Strong and early evidence for the role of genetic factors came from the observation that sociopathic and alcoholic fathers produced a significantly higher rate of sociopathic children (32%) than did fathers without this diagnosis (16%)."
Biosocial Criminology by David E. Comings (reviewed in Crime Times, 2004, Vol. 10, No. 3)