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Shame, Guilt, Antisocial Behaviour and Juvenile Justice: A Psychological Perspective

Olthof, Tjeert
June 4, 2015

Source: (2002) In, Ido Weijers and Anthony Duff, eds., Punishing Juveniles: Principle and Critique. Oxford: Hart Publishing. P. 193-206

Feelings of guilt and shame, or the prospects of experiencing guilt and shame, help prevent us from committing moral and social transgressions, as Tjeert Olthof observes. Braithwaite’s reintegrative shaming procedure, by definition, consists of inducing guilt and shame in individuals for whom those feelings were not strong enough to prevent their offenses. From a developmental psychology perspective, reintegrative shaming is thus an attempt to instill in a person something that was lacking in his or her moral and emotional development. In this essay Olthof draws out the implications of this developmental psychology perspective for the question of whether reintegrative shaming is likely to work, as well as for the identification of factors that could make it more likely to work.


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