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Mental disorder is a cause of crime: The cornerstone of forensic psychiatry

Anckarsater, Henrik; Radovic, Susanna; Svennerlind, Christer; Höglund, Pontus LU and Radovic, Filip (2009) In International Journal of Law and Psychiatry 32(6). p.342-347
Abstract
The assumption that mental disorder is a cause of crime is the foundation of forensic psychiatry, but conceptual. epistemological. and empirical analyses show that neither mental nor crime, or the causation implied, are clear-cut concepts. "Mental" denotes heterogeneous aspects of a per-son such as inner experiences. cognitive abilities, and behaviour patterns described in a non-physical vocabulary. In psychology and psychiatry, mental describes law-bound, caused aspects of human functioning that are predictable and generalizable. Problems defined as mental disorders are end-points of dimensional inter-individual differences rather than natural categories. Deficits in cognitive faculties, such as attention, verbal understanding, impulse... (More)
The assumption that mental disorder is a cause of crime is the foundation of forensic psychiatry, but conceptual. epistemological. and empirical analyses show that neither mental nor crime, or the causation implied, are clear-cut concepts. "Mental" denotes heterogeneous aspects of a per-son such as inner experiences. cognitive abilities, and behaviour patterns described in a non-physical vocabulary. In psychology and psychiatry, mental describes law-bound, caused aspects of human functioning that are predictable and generalizable. Problems defined as mental disorders are end-points of dimensional inter-individual differences rather than natural categories. Deficits in cognitive faculties, such as attention, verbal understanding, impulse control, and reality assessment, may be susceptibility factors that relate to behaviours (Such as crimes) by increasing the probability (risk) for a negative behaviour or constitute causes in the sense of INUS conditions (insufficient but Non-redundant parts of Unnecessary but Sufficient conditions). Attributing causes to complex behaviours such as crimes is not an unbiased process, and mental disorders will attract disproportionate attention when it comes to explanations of behaviours that we wish to distance ourselves from. Only by rigorous interpretation of what psychiatry actually can inform us about, using empirical analyses of quantified aggressive antisocial behaviours and their possible explanatory factors, can we gain a clearer notion of the relationship between mental disorder and crime. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
INUS condition, Risk, Cause, Forensic psychiatry, Crime
in
International Journal of Law and Psychiatry
volume
32
issue
6
pages
342 - 347
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • wos:000272812200002
  • scopus:70350564369
ISSN
0160-2527
DOI
10.1016/j.ijlp.2009.09.002
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
939854ea-37aa-4c05-8584-034703ac9bed (old id 1532318)
date added to LUP
2010-01-29 11:44:21
date last changed
2017-06-18 03:40:08
@article{939854ea-37aa-4c05-8584-034703ac9bed,
  abstract     = {The assumption that mental disorder is a cause of crime is the foundation of forensic psychiatry, but conceptual. epistemological. and empirical analyses show that neither mental nor crime, or the causation implied, are clear-cut concepts. "Mental" denotes heterogeneous aspects of a per-son such as inner experiences. cognitive abilities, and behaviour patterns described in a non-physical vocabulary. In psychology and psychiatry, mental describes law-bound, caused aspects of human functioning that are predictable and generalizable. Problems defined as mental disorders are end-points of dimensional inter-individual differences rather than natural categories. Deficits in cognitive faculties, such as attention, verbal understanding, impulse control, and reality assessment, may be susceptibility factors that relate to behaviours (Such as crimes) by increasing the probability (risk) for a negative behaviour or constitute causes in the sense of INUS conditions (insufficient but Non-redundant parts of Unnecessary but Sufficient conditions). Attributing causes to complex behaviours such as crimes is not an unbiased process, and mental disorders will attract disproportionate attention when it comes to explanations of behaviours that we wish to distance ourselves from. Only by rigorous interpretation of what psychiatry actually can inform us about, using empirical analyses of quantified aggressive antisocial behaviours and their possible explanatory factors, can we gain a clearer notion of the relationship between mental disorder and crime. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.},
  author       = {Anckarsater, Henrik and Radovic, Susanna and Svennerlind, Christer and Höglund, Pontus and Radovic, Filip},
  issn         = {0160-2527},
  keyword      = {INUS condition,Risk,Cause,Forensic psychiatry,Crime},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {6},
  pages        = {342--347},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {International Journal of Law and Psychiatry},
  title        = {Mental disorder is a cause of crime: The cornerstone of forensic psychiatry},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijlp.2009.09.002},
  volume       = {32},
  year         = {2009},
}