‘F*ck It!’: Matza and the Mood of Fatalism in the Desistance Process

‘F*ck It!’: Matza and the Mood of Fatalism in the Desistance Process AbstractDrawing on interview data from three countries (Australia, United States and England), this article examines setbacks and recovery in desistance from crime. We show that giving up crime is a fragile project and that the implications of fragility in desistance are rarely integrated into pre- and post-release support options. To shine a light on the ‘phenomenological foreground’ of this fragility, we use Matza’s concepts of desperation and infraction and analyse how and why would-be desisters come unstuck. We find that derailment in the desistance process (frequently articulated by interviewees as ‘fuck it’ moments) rarely signifies the desire to reoffend and more often equates to the loss of the practical and emotional capacity to desist from crime. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The British Journal of Criminology Oxford University Press

‘F*ck It!’: Matza and the Mood of Fatalism in the Desistance Process

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Publisher
Oxford University Press
Copyright
© The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Centre for Crime and Justice Studies (ISTD). All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com
ISSN
0007-0955
eISSN
1464-3529
D.O.I.
10.1093/bjc/azw041
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

AbstractDrawing on interview data from three countries (Australia, United States and England), this article examines setbacks and recovery in desistance from crime. We show that giving up crime is a fragile project and that the implications of fragility in desistance are rarely integrated into pre- and post-release support options. To shine a light on the ‘phenomenological foreground’ of this fragility, we use Matza’s concepts of desperation and infraction and analyse how and why would-be desisters come unstuck. We find that derailment in the desistance process (frequently articulated by interviewees as ‘fuck it’ moments) rarely signifies the desire to reoffend and more often equates to the loss of the practical and emotional capacity to desist from crime.

Journal

The British Journal of CriminologyOxford University Press

Published: Sep 1, 2017

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