Skip to main content

Social Psychology of Punishment of Crime



Social Psychology of Punishment of Crime

Margit E. Oswald (Editor), Steffen Bieneck (Editor), Jorg Hupfeld-Heinemann (Editor)

ISBN: 978-1-119-16119-6 June 2015 Wiley-Blackwell 296 Pages

Download Product Flyer

Download Product Flyer

Download Product Flyer is to download PDF in new tab. This is a dummy description. Download Product Flyer is to download PDF in new tab. This is a dummy description. Download Product Flyer is to download PDF in new tab. This is a dummy description. Download Product Flyer is to download PDF in new tab. This is a dummy description.


In recent years, research interest has increased both in the needs of punishment by the public and in the psychological processes underlying decisions on sentencing. This comprehensive look at the social psychology of punishment focuses on recent advances, and presents new findings based on the authors’ own empirical research. Chapters explore the application of social psychology and social cognitive theories to decision making in the context of punishments by judges and the punitiveness of laymen. The book also highlights the different legal systems in the UK, US and Europe, discussing how attitudes to punishment can change in the context of cultural and social development.

Contributors ix

Foreword xi
Neil Vidmar

Introduction xiii
Margit E. Oswald, Steffen Bieneck and Jörg Hupfeld-Heinemann

Part I: Attitudes towards Punishment and Legal Sanctions in a Changing Society 1

1 The diversity of nations and legal systems – contrasting the Dutch and the Americans 3
Peter J. van Koppen

2 New approaches to justice in the light of virtues and problems of the penal system 19
Tom R. Tyler

3 Psychological perspectives on the place of restorative justice in criminal justice systems 39
Dena M. Gromet

4 Punitive public attitudes: a threat to the legitimacy of the criminal justice system? 55
Jan W. de Keijser and Henk Elffers

5 Punishment attitudes: their social and psychological bases 75
John Duckitt

6 Criminal society and criminal immigrants: a social construction of reality by mass media? 93
Michael Windzio and Matthias Kleimann

7 Public opinion and the death penalty 113
James D. Unnever and Francis T. Cullen

Part II: Moral Reasoning and Reactions to Crime 135

8 Justice and revenge 137
Mario Gollwitzer

9 Emotions and legal judgements: normative issues and empirical findings 157
Ute Gabriel

10 A two-process model of punishment 173
Margit E. Oswald and Ingrid Stucki

11 Punitive damages: a vehicle for punishment in civil cases 193
Brian H. Bornstein, Timothy R. Robicheaux and Sarah Thimsen

12 Offenders’ social categorization: ingroup bias or black sheep effect? 211
Jan-Willem van Prooijen

13 Measuring attitudes to sentencing and sentencing goals 231
Loretta J. Stalans

14 How adequate is the vignette technique as a research tool for psycho-legal research? 255
Steffen Bieneck

Part III: Impact of Heuristics and Biases on Decision Making in the Context of Crime 273

15 Models of decision making on guilt and sanctions 275
Jörg Hupfeld-Heinemann and Bettina von Helversen

16 Heuristic strategies and persistent biases in sentencing decisions 295
Birte Englich

17 Biased memory, biased verdicts: memory effects in juror judgments 315
Kristi A. Costabile

18 A social-cognitive perspective on attrition rates in sexual assault cases 335
Barbara Krahé and Anja Berger

19 How knowledge about the defendant’s previous convictions influences judgments of guilt 357
Margit E. Oswald

20 Disparities in sentencing decisions 379
Siegfried L. Sporer and Jane Goodman-Delahunty

Part IV: Consequences of Sentencing 403

21 The consequences of legal punishment 405
Stefan Suhling and Werner Greve

22 The effects of legal involvement on crime victims’ psychological adjustment 427
Ulrich Orth

Index 443