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May 1936

The Individual Criminal: Studies in the Psychogenetics of Crime.

Arch NeurPsych. 1936;35(5):1173-1174. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1936.02260050247016

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This book is a sequel to "Case Studies in the Psychopathology of Crime" and represents a sincere attempt to formulate criminal behavior in terms of processes and forces outside the subject's control. The book reveals that the offender is "a victim of circumstances," to use the criminal's jargon, but it fails in the main to get very far behind the "victim's" own superficial view of what these circumstances are. In view of the subtitle, this is especially unfortunate.

The five case histories which were given in detail in the previous volume are here presented in shorter form but are expanded with "interpretational" and "diagnostic" discussions which are more elaborate than elucidative. Interpretations are interpolated in the life histories, but there are also additional subsections on the "personality make-up" which are essentially descriptive recapitulations of the life history in respect to the criminal's overt attitudes and reactions. While in each case