Development of aggression and violence from infancy to adulthood

A biopsychosocial perspective

Authored by: Stéphane Paquin , Eric Lacourse , Isabelle Ouellet Morin

The Routledge International Handbook of Biosocial Criminology

Print publication date:  December  2014
Online publication date:  December  2014

Print ISBN: 9780415722131
eBook ISBN: 9781315858449
Adobe ISBN: 9781317936749


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Although aggression and violence have greatly declined in most European societies since the end of the Middle Ages, they remain an important preoccupation in modern industrial societies. The questions surrounding the origins and evolution of criminal behavior are a centuries-old debate (Quetelet, 1835). In the mid-nineteenth century, Cesare Lombroso made his mark in the history of criminology by rejecting Locke’s vision of violence. Locke’s philosophical position stated that children were inherently neither good nor evil, and that violence was a normal behavior in a state of war (Locke, 1689). Rejecting this view, Lombroso’s anthropological and physiognomical theory argued that born criminals had inherited traits that would make them more likely to commit violent crimes (Lombroso, 1876).

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