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Boys and the obsession with war

Boys and the obsession with war


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Recently, I have been wondering why boys are so attracted to war and war-specific video games. Perhaps it is improper of me to assume that this obsession only applies to boys, but for the most part I have only experienced it amongst males. I, myself, have noticed a personal attraction to the idea of war, but have never understood why it so appeals to me.

  1. What is the psychology behind all this?

  2. Is it a correct assumption to say that boys who play violent video games are becoming desensitized?


The American Psychological Association goes to war against boys and men

This article was published more than 1 year ago, information might not be accurate.

The American Psychological Association (APA) has, for the first time in its history, come out with Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Boys and Men.

One does not have to have read the entire 30,000 word document to appreciate its thrust: “traditional masculinity” is bad for society as well as to boys and men themselves. Stoicism, competitiveness and risk-taking, the qualities we consider desirable when they result in firefighting, search-and-rescue operations, self-sacrifice for women and children (see under Titanic) and combat in the defence of the nation, are, the APA believes, “psychologically harmful.”

In a section called “masculine ideology,” the APA says: “Masculine ideology is a set of descriptive, prescriptive, and proscriptive … cognitions about boys and men (academic citations added). Although there are differences in masculinity ideologies, there is a particular constellation of standards that have held sway over large segments of the population, including: anti-femininity, achievement, eschewal of the appearance of weakness, and adventure, risk and violence. These have been collectively referred to as traditional masculinity ideology.” This statement seems to have been composed by someone who has to bite her or his tongue in order not to describe manly men as “deplorables.”

Let’s unpack this a bit. By “anti-femininity,” the APA means homophobia, but homophobia as a systematic attitude was not so much a feature of traditional masculinity as of traditional society. Women in a previous era were as likely to mock homosexuals as men. “Violence” was never a yardstick for masculinity in our culture, although physicality is.

The others—achievement, eschewal of the appearance of weakness, adventure, and risk-taking —are indeed masculine qualities, and they are not part of an “ideology,” they are inherent. They are the qualities that brought humankind from caves to the Silk Road to global exploration across dangerous seas and to the moon landing. But the monumental accomplishments that can be traced directly to these masculine traits are of no interest to the APA. The Guidelines spew forth all the predictable shibboleths of social-justice warriordom—intersectionality, oppression, privilege, patriarchy, etc. Under the rubrics of Identity Politics, “traditional masculinity” is inherently toxic to women and other fragile people.

For an interesting contrast and a kind of “control” to the APA’s guidelines for treating boys and men, we turn to the 2007 APA Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Girls and Women. Here we find no criticism whatsoever of femininity, traditional or otherwise, but we do learn about the many “stressors” in girls’ and women’s lives. These include: “interpersonal victimization and violence, unrealistic media images of girls and women, discrimination and oppression, devaluation, limited economic resources, role overload, relationship disruptions, and work iniquities. Violence against girls and women is often predicated in sexism, racism, classism, and homophobia.”

Hmm. Many of these stressors apply equally to boys and men. Intimate Partner Violence is largely bilateral (and rates are statistically elevated amongst lesbians.) Nobody is more subject to “devaluation” in our culture than white heterosexual men. Men also suffer from “limited economic resources.” Same for “relationship disruptions.” What does “unrealistic media images of girls and women” mean? In my reading of the media, men are often portrayed as stupid, incompetent and/or immature. Women are very often portrayed as smart, sexy, high-achieving and confident.

The general idea promoted in these Guidelines is that women are victims. We are told they are seven times more likely than boys to be depressed, and nine times more likely to experience eating disorders. Is that men’s fault? There is no literature to my knowledge that gives evidence of any such causal link, but the APA does actually make a stab at blaming men anyway, stating “The abuse and violence in our society (e.g., abuse, battering, rape) may contribute to the development of dysfunctional behavior such as eating disorders, depression, anxiety, and suicidal behavior.” (Male suicide rates are much higher than women’s, but the Guidelines for boys and men do not suggest that women “may” contribute to them.)

So male violence “may” contribute to these female problems? Right. And you know what else “may” contribute? Climate change! Or the invention of Size 0! “May” is the ultimate weasel word when alleged experts don’t know the answer, and it does not belong in any document purporting to guide psychologists in their treatment of girls and women. In implying such a link, they are giving licence to impressionable psychologists to encourage their women patients to blame the men in their lives for disorders that can have numerous other influences, including a certain kind of perfectionism one finds more often in girls than boys (which boys and men did nothing to create), and negative relationships with mothers or female peers.

Or here’s a thought: All this depression and anxiety “may” come from female ideologues, who as educators and role models: routinely tell girls they can “be anything” and “have it all,” which causes anxiety when “all” fails to emerge, as it almost invariably does who encourage girls to explore their sexuality without letting emotion get in the way of healthy pleasure, but fail to warn them that promiscuity can leave them feeling sad and empty and humiliated who valorize abortion, but fail to warn of abortion’s frequent psychological impact who deplore early commitment, even when a young woman and man happen to be right for each other who encourage misandry by belittling or ignoring men’s legitimate concerns, or fail to acknowledge men’s legitimate contributions to society who value career ambitions over motherhood who confuse girls regarding the difference between being wooing and sexual misconduct and of course who persuade girls and women that if they are unhappy, the reason never lies within, or from poorly-considered choices, but is always the fault of a “traditional” male asserting his privilege, or “social construction” that thwarts their self-realization.

The APA provides no actual evidence of any specific reason why girls and women are demonstrably more depressed and anxious than boys and men. They even admit that, “blatant forms of sexist and racist bias have decreased over time.” Instead of exploring the possibility that feminism, the most influential ideology of our era, has apparently not led to an increase in girls’ and women’s mental health and – this time I am serious, not sarcastic— “may” very well be at the root of much of female unhappiness, they double down and theorize that “the continuing presence of more subtle forms of sexist and racist bias” are in play.

Psychologists treating individual boys and men for individual problems should not be basing their approach on unscientific collectivist theories. It is hardly surprising to learn that the psychology profession has become increasingly populated by women in recent years, and also trending younger, meaning more of its practitioners came into the profession after having been steeped for years in an increasingly more radically anti-science and pro-ideological academic environment.

The Guidelines note that men are less likely than women to seek therapy because “traditional masculinity” discourages men from opening up and seeking help, but ironically, any astute male who reads the Guidelines wouldn’t want to put himself in the hands of any psychologist who’s following them. Indeed, the APA has just managed to alienate the very people it thinks are most in need of its ministrations. Good one, APA!

The lack of academic rigour and the blatantly ideology-based bias of both these sets of guidelines would be risible if the APA, with an American membership of 117,500, most of them practicing psychologists, were not such an influential body. When the APA speaks, institutions like universities and the courts listen. Vulnerable patients of these psychologists will also listen. It is fair to say that millions of lives will be intimately affected by these guidelines. And not in a good way. Because they will be affected according to their gender rather than as individuals.

Psychologists are being advised that before they even begin to treat their patients as human beings, they should consider their male patients to be automatically in need of existential alteration, and consider their female patients to be automatically in need of sympathy and blame-shifting.

If improving mental health was their objective, both sets of Guidelines are worse than useless. On the other hand, if furthering misandry and infantilizing women was their objective, the APA has created an ideal blueprint for success.


Most women understand very little about the psychology of men’s mind in dating, relationships and love… even though many women believe they know what men want!

They’re confused about why men do things like pull away, lose interest, get bored, stop giving attention or even fall out of love and leave.

They end up believing it’s men’s fault for not caring enough. And while men do a lot of dumbass, brainless, caveman crap, his emotions don’t lie.

So, we’re at a pivotal point where today’s women must know how to trigger a man’s psychological attraction and love so she can enjoy having a man completely in love and not worry about growing older alone.

There’s nothing wrong with wanting that!

Many women fail to both trigger an emotional connection (beyond sex or friendship) and keep that flame alive into the future.

Because many women are triggering the wrong things in a man’s psychology. When you understand how a man’s mind works in a relationship, you’ll never second guess yourself.

You will start to get the attention, affection and connection you deserve.

So today, I will share with you two powerful secrets about…


Abstract

The accumulation of anecdotal accounts of copycat crime suggests that popular culture plays an important role in some instances and aspects of criminal behavior. However, there is little empirical research specifically examining the copycat effect on criminal behavior. Questions remain regarding the nature and extent of copycat crime, cultural influences that shape the copycat effect, the role and relevance of popular culture as a motivating factor for criminal behavior, and issues the copycat phenomenon raises for legal determinations of criminal responsibility. This paper reviews the research literature and contemporary case examples of copycat crime with attention to the influence of mass media technology on criminal behavior, the mechanisms of media-mediated crime, and the relevance of understanding the copycat phenomenon for determinations of criminal responsibility in insanity cases. An integrative theoretical model of copycat crime is proposed, a methodological framework for empirically investigating copycat crime is presented, and practical implications for understanding the role of the copycat effect on criminal behavior are discussed.


Humankind's Enduring Fascination with the Apocalypse

December 21, according to much-hyped misreadings of the Mayan calendar, will mark the end of the world. It's not the first "end is nigh" proclamation—and it's unlikely to be the last. That's because, deep down for various reasons, there's something appealing—at least to some of us—about the end of the world.

Enjoy the Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

University of Minnesota neuroscientist Shmuel Lissek, who studies the fear system, believes that at its heart, the concept of doomsday evokes an innate and ancient bias in most mammals. "The initial response to any hint of alarm is fear. This is the architecture with which we’re built," Lissek says. Over evolutionary history, organisms with a better-safe-than-sorry approach survive. This mechanism has had consequences for both the body and brain, where the fast-acting amygdala can activate a fearful stress response before "higher" cortical areas have a chance to assess the situation and respond more rationally.

But why would anyone enjoy kindling this fearful response? Lissek suspects that some apocalyptic believers find the idea that the end is nigh to be validating. Individuals with a history of traumatic experiences, for example, may be fatalistic. For these people, finding a group of like-minded fatalists is reassuring. There may also be comfort in being able to attribute doom to some larger cosmic order—such as an ancient Mayan prophecy. This kind of mythology removes any sense of individual responsibility.

There’s an even broader allure to knowing the precise end date. "Apocalyptic beliefs make existential threats—the fear of our mortality—predictable," Lissek says. Lissek, in collaboration with National Institute of Mental Health neuroscientist Christian Grillon and colleagues, has found that when an unpleasant or painful experience, such as an electric shock, is predictable, we relax. The anxiety produced by uncertainty is gone. Knowing when the end will come doesn't appeal equally to everyone, of course—but for many of us it's paradoxically a reason to stop worrying.

This also means people can focus on preparing. Doomsday preppers who assemble their bunker and canned food, Lissek believes, are engaged in goal-oriented behaviors, which are a proven therapy in times of trouble.

The Power of Knowledge

Beyond the universal aspects of fear and our survival response to it, certain personality traits may make individuals more susceptible to believing it's the end of the world. Social psychologist Karen Douglas at the University of Kent studies conspiracy theorists and suspects that her study subjects, in some cases, share attributes with those who believe in an impending apocalypse. She points out that, although these are essentially two different phenomena, certain apocalyptic beliefs are also at the heart of conspiracy theories—for example, the belief that government agencies know about an impending disaster and are intentionally hiding this fact to prevent panic.

"One trait I see linking the two is the feeling of powerlessness, often connected to a mistrust in authority," Douglas says. Among conspiracy theorists, these convictions of mistrust and impotence make their conspiracies more precious—and real. "People feel like they have knowledge that others do not."

Relatively few studies exist on the individuals who start and propagate these theories. Douglas points out that research into the psychology of persuasion has found that those who believe most are also most motivated to broadcast their beliefs. In the Internet age, that's an easier feat than ever before.

Lessons from Dystopia

Steven Schlozman, drawing both from his experiences as a Harvard Medical School child psychiatrist and novelist (his first book recounts a zombie apocalypse) believes it's the post-apocalyptic landscape that fascinates people most.

"I talk to kids in my practice and they see it as a good thing. They say, 'life would be so simple—I'd shoot some zombies and wouldn't have to go to school,'" Schlozman says. In both literature and in speaking with patients, Schlozman has noticed that people frequently romanticize the end times. They imagine surviving, thriving and going back to nature.

Schlozman recently had an experience that eerily echoed Orson Welles's 1938 The War of the Worlds broadcast. He was discussing his book on a radio program and they had to cut the show short when listeners misconstrued his fiction for fact. He believes the propensity to panic is not constant in history but instead reflects the times. In today's complicated world with terrorism, war, fiscal cliffs and climate change, people are primed for panic.

"All of this uncertainty and all of this fear comes together and people think maybe life would be better" after a disaster, Schlozman says. Of course, in truth, most of their post-apocalyptic dreams are just fantasies that ignore the real hardships of pioneer life and crumbling infrastructure. He points out that, if anything, tales of apocalypse, particularly involving zombies, should ideally teach us something about the world we should avoid—and how to make necessary changes now.

The views expressed are those of the author(s) and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.


The American Psychological Association goes to war against boys and men

This article was published more than 1 year ago, information might not be accurate.

The American Psychological Association (APA) has, for the first time in its history, come out with Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Boys and Men.

One does not have to have read the entire 30,000 word document to appreciate its thrust: “traditional masculinity” is bad for society as well as to boys and men themselves. Stoicism, competitiveness and risk-taking, the qualities we consider desirable when they result in firefighting, search-and-rescue operations, self-sacrifice for women and children (see under Titanic) and combat in the defence of the nation, are, the APA believes, “psychologically harmful.”

In a section called “masculine ideology,” the APA says: “Masculine ideology is a set of descriptive, prescriptive, and proscriptive … cognitions about boys and men (academic citations added). Although there are differences in masculinity ideologies, there is a particular constellation of standards that have held sway over large segments of the population, including: anti-femininity, achievement, eschewal of the appearance of weakness, and adventure, risk and violence. These have been collectively referred to as traditional masculinity ideology.” This statement seems to have been composed by someone who has to bite her or his tongue in order not to describe manly men as “deplorables.”

Let’s unpack this a bit. By “anti-femininity,” the APA means homophobia, but homophobia as a systematic attitude was not so much a feature of traditional masculinity as of traditional society. Women in a previous era were as likely to mock homosexuals as men. “Violence” was never a yardstick for masculinity in our culture, although physicality is.

The others—achievement, eschewal of the appearance of weakness, adventure, and risk-taking —are indeed masculine qualities, and they are not part of an “ideology,” they are inherent. They are the qualities that brought humankind from caves to the Silk Road to global exploration across dangerous seas and to the moon landing. But the monumental accomplishments that can be traced directly to these masculine traits are of no interest to the APA. The Guidelines spew forth all the predictable shibboleths of social-justice warriordom—intersectionality, oppression, privilege, patriarchy, etc. Under the rubrics of Identity Politics, “traditional masculinity” is inherently toxic to women and other fragile people.

For an interesting contrast and a kind of “control” to the APA’s guidelines for treating boys and men, we turn to the 2007 APA Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Girls and Women. Here we find no criticism whatsoever of femininity, traditional or otherwise, but we do learn about the many “stressors” in girls’ and women’s lives. These include: “interpersonal victimization and violence, unrealistic media images of girls and women, discrimination and oppression, devaluation, limited economic resources, role overload, relationship disruptions, and work iniquities. Violence against girls and women is often predicated in sexism, racism, classism, and homophobia.”

Hmm. Many of these stressors apply equally to boys and men. Intimate Partner Violence is largely bilateral (and rates are statistically elevated amongst lesbians.) Nobody is more subject to “devaluation” in our culture than white heterosexual men. Men also suffer from “limited economic resources.” Same for “relationship disruptions.” What does “unrealistic media images of girls and women” mean? In my reading of the media, men are often portrayed as stupid, incompetent and/or immature. Women are very often portrayed as smart, sexy, high-achieving and confident.

The general idea promoted in these Guidelines is that women are victims. We are told they are seven times more likely than boys to be depressed, and nine times more likely to experience eating disorders. Is that men’s fault? There is no literature to my knowledge that gives evidence of any such causal link, but the APA does actually make a stab at blaming men anyway, stating “The abuse and violence in our society (e.g., abuse, battering, rape) may contribute to the development of dysfunctional behavior such as eating disorders, depression, anxiety, and suicidal behavior.” (Male suicide rates are much higher than women’s, but the Guidelines for boys and men do not suggest that women “may” contribute to them.)

So male violence “may” contribute to these female problems? Right. And you know what else “may” contribute? Climate change! Or the invention of Size 0! “May” is the ultimate weasel word when alleged experts don’t know the answer, and it does not belong in any document purporting to guide psychologists in their treatment of girls and women. In implying such a link, they are giving licence to impressionable psychologists to encourage their women patients to blame the men in their lives for disorders that can have numerous other influences, including a certain kind of perfectionism one finds more often in girls than boys (which boys and men did nothing to create), and negative relationships with mothers or female peers.

Or here’s a thought: All this depression and anxiety “may” come from female ideologues, who as educators and role models: routinely tell girls they can “be anything” and “have it all,” which causes anxiety when “all” fails to emerge, as it almost invariably does who encourage girls to explore their sexuality without letting emotion get in the way of healthy pleasure, but fail to warn them that promiscuity can leave them feeling sad and empty and humiliated who valorize abortion, but fail to warn of abortion’s frequent psychological impact who deplore early commitment, even when a young woman and man happen to be right for each other who encourage misandry by belittling or ignoring men’s legitimate concerns, or fail to acknowledge men’s legitimate contributions to society who value career ambitions over motherhood who confuse girls regarding the difference between being wooing and sexual misconduct and of course who persuade girls and women that if they are unhappy, the reason never lies within, or from poorly-considered choices, but is always the fault of a “traditional” male asserting his privilege, or “social construction” that thwarts their self-realization.

The APA provides no actual evidence of any specific reason why girls and women are demonstrably more depressed and anxious than boys and men. They even admit that, “blatant forms of sexist and racist bias have decreased over time.” Instead of exploring the possibility that feminism, the most influential ideology of our era, has apparently not led to an increase in girls’ and women’s mental health and – this time I am serious, not sarcastic— “may” very well be at the root of much of female unhappiness, they double down and theorize that “the continuing presence of more subtle forms of sexist and racist bias” are in play.

Psychologists treating individual boys and men for individual problems should not be basing their approach on unscientific collectivist theories. It is hardly surprising to learn that the psychology profession has become increasingly populated by women in recent years, and also trending younger, meaning more of its practitioners came into the profession after having been steeped for years in an increasingly more radically anti-science and pro-ideological academic environment.

The Guidelines note that men are less likely than women to seek therapy because “traditional masculinity” discourages men from opening up and seeking help, but ironically, any astute male who reads the Guidelines wouldn’t want to put himself in the hands of any psychologist who’s following them. Indeed, the APA has just managed to alienate the very people it thinks are most in need of its ministrations. Good one, APA!

The lack of academic rigour and the blatantly ideology-based bias of both these sets of guidelines would be risible if the APA, with an American membership of 117,500, most of them practicing psychologists, were not such an influential body. When the APA speaks, institutions like universities and the courts listen. Vulnerable patients of these psychologists will also listen. It is fair to say that millions of lives will be intimately affected by these guidelines. And not in a good way. Because they will be affected according to their gender rather than as individuals.

Psychologists are being advised that before they even begin to treat their patients as human beings, they should consider their male patients to be automatically in need of existential alteration, and consider their female patients to be automatically in need of sympathy and blame-shifting.

If improving mental health was their objective, both sets of Guidelines are worse than useless. On the other hand, if furthering misandry and infantilizing women was their objective, the APA has created an ideal blueprint for success.


Group trauma-focused cognitive-behavioural therapy with former child soldiers and other war-affected boys in the DR Congo: a randomised controlled trial

Background: The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has been home to the world's deadliest conflict since World War II and is reported to have the largest number of child soldiers in the world. Despite evidence of the debilitating impact of war, no group-based mental health or psychosocial intervention has been evaluated in a randomised controlled trial for psychologically distressed former child soldiers.

Method: A randomised controlled trial involving 50 boys, aged 13-17, including former child soldiers (n = 39) and other war-affected boys (n = 11). They were randomly assigned to an intervention group, or wait-list control group. The intervention group received a 15-session, group-based, culturally adapted Trauma-Focused Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (TF-CBT) intervention. Assessment interviews were completed at baseline, postintervention and 3-month follow-up (intervention group).

Results: Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) demonstrated that, in comparison to the wait-list control group, the TF-CBT intervention group had highly significant reductions in posttraumatic stress symptoms, overall psychosocial distress, depression or anxiety-like symptoms, conduct problems and a significant increase in prosocial behaviour (p < .001 for all). Effect sizes were higher when former child soldier scores were separated for sub-analysis. Three-month follow-up of the intervention group found that treatment gains were maintained.

Conclusions: A culturally modified, group-based TF-CBT intervention was effective in reducing posttraumatic stress and psychosocial distress in former child soldiers and other war-affected boys.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01494831.

Keywords: Children group posttraumatic stress psychosocial distress therapy war.

© 2013 The Authors. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry © 2013 Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health.


Transcript

Audrey Hamilton: Men are more likely than women to die prematurely, regardless of background. But when you look at men from lower income and minority groups, their chances of living a long and healthy life are greatly reduced, according to numerous studies. But what’s behind the statistics? In this episode, we speak with one psychologist about depression, substance use and how issues like gender roles are affecting men and boys in these vulnerable groups. I’m Audrey Hamilton and this is Speaking of Psychology. Wizdom Powell is an associate professor of health behavior at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Gillings School of Global Public Health. Dr. Powell is also a faculty member at UNC’s Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and director of UNC’s Men’s Health Research Lab. She is a nationally recognized psychological expert on the health disparities faced by minority boys and men. The term “health disparities” refers to differences in the availability and quality of care that are often experienced by members of minority groups. Powell’s research focuses on the intersection of race, masculinity, health beliefs and behavior and she has been recognized by the American Psychological Association and The White House for her work. Welcome Dr. Powell.

Wizdom Powell: Thank you for having me.

Audrey Hamilton: How and why are lower income black men and boys at a significant disadvantage in this country when it comes to health outcomes and mental health outcomes?

Wizdom Powell: Well, I think it’s important to keep in mind that the correlation does exist between income, low income status and poor mental health. That’s a consistent correlation across a number of longitudinal and cross-sectional studies. But, that’s a simple, single story. I think it’s important to sort of unpack that and contextualize it because low income black men and men of color, boys of color are not predisposed to engaging in riskier behaviors or having poorer health outcomes. There are a lot of sort of contextual issues and factors that drive those associations. We know that when people have lower income they have less access to resources. They have lower access to opportunities for upward social mobility. They have lower access to health care and mental health care. And because of those sort of essential factors, you see this relationship that manifests as one that suggests that being lower income means that you will automatically have poorer health status. I think in order to get beneath that correlation, you have to look at some of the mechanisms driving it, including poorer access to care and also poorer access to jobs and other forms of socioeconomic opportunity.

Audrey Hamilton: Masculine norms – as they’re called in psychological research are sometimes described as the rules of masculinity and may include specific ways men are told they should act – you know, be tough, stay in control, be a provider, etc. What affect do these norms have on men’s mental health over time, particularly when men encounter difficult times or maybe they don’t fit these norms?

Wizdom Powell: Yeah, so masculinity norms for example can govern the way men seek help. They can govern the kinds of disclosures men make when they are feeling distressed or they are exposed to stressful events. But those norms don’t operate in a single way all the time. They vary from moment to moment, situation to situation such that a man who enacts a particular masculinity in the boardroom may enact a very different kind of masculinity on the street corner. It’s just, it is more complex than that. But in general, when men adhere rigidly to the kinds of norms that encourage them to not share their emotions, to be sort of relentlessly self-reliant without seeking the help or support of others. They can have poorer mental health outcomes, particularly more depressive symptomatology because doing so cuts them off I think from the social networks and social supports that might help them get through a difficult time. The norms around masculinity also vary by race and social location. So it depends on where you sit on the social ladder, how you enact those particular brand of masculinity. Lower income men and men who have been edged out of the opportunity structure may feel a particular structure to man up in different kinds of ways because they don’t have access to all the ways that a man who’s a breadwinner and a provider may be able to enact masculinity. So you may in those cases see different displays of masculinity. I think it’s also important to keep in mind that among men who are marginalized and oppressed, that often the masculinity that they enact is a response to those threats to their humanity. When people are feeling put upon by social pressures, by exposures like every day racism, they may act in a particular way because doing so allows them to recoup that part of themselves that gets chipped away at by those social exposures. So it’s a very sort of complicated story. I think we’re still learning more about the physiologic effects of masculinity nuance particularly as it relates to emotion regulation.

Audrey Hamilton: Ok, so what do you mean by emotion regulation?

Wizdom Powell: Yeah, so when I’m talking about emotion regulation, I’m talking about the strategies individuals use to manage, cope with, sort through, the various emotions that come with daily living. So those strategies can include expressing yourself – something happens to you then you talk about it or they can include suppressing those experiences. And what we found from the data is that suppressing emotion in of itself isn’t necessarily harmful. It’s when you do it habitually. Like if it’s your “go-to” response to all the stress that you experience. Eventually, that suppression will cause a rebound in some other areas – like whack-a-mole – you know, you hit it down in one place and it kind of pops up in another. And you can see that over time among men who use that as a strategy to cope consistently and habitually.

Audrey Hamilton: What are some other strategies that men use to cope? I mean, what about anger or withdrawal or just some examples of how some of these difficulties can create more difficulties?

Wizdom Powell: Sure. I think that we are learning more about the variation and emotional responses among men because quite frankly, we focused a lot of our attention on men’s anger. And anger is a legitimate emotion. It’s legitimate, especially in the face of social injustice, so I think it’s getting a bad rap. But I think it also gets an overwhelming amount of focus despite the fact that men have a range of other kinds of emotions that they experience, including those we call the self-conscious emotions, like shame. So I think that when men experience stressful experiences they respond with the emotion that is closest and most available to them. I think that what we can see in terms of emotions that are associated with more harmful behaviors is that when men experienced heightened anger or other negative emotions they can transfer those emotions into behaviors. So as I think you were alluding to, like there are other kinds of things men do in response to stress and negative emotion that can put them on the pathway to poorer health outcomes. Like the data suggested, men tend to use more alcohol as opposed to women when they are stressed. We can see higher rates of substance abuse in males because of that anger and emotional response.

Audrey Hamilton: One of the studies that you conducted talks about how men, black men in particular, are very distressful of the healthcare system, which I assume can only, like you said, keep them going through this cycle of lack of coping, lack of seeking out resources to help them. Why do you think this is and how does this behavior play a role in their health and well-being?

Wizdom Powell: I think it’s really important. I’m always careful to contextualize these kinds of findings because I think one could look at this and think men, black men are mistrustful and that’s in some inherent personality flaw or dispositional defect. And actually, mistrust among black men is rooted in experiences in the here and now. We know that there’s a long, long dark history of medical malice and apartheid in certain marginalized communities. And certainly those experiences are top of mine for some black men, as they should be. But, I think what we’re finding more is that even with those experiences in the background, when black men have more patient-centered, empathic experiences with physicians, they report lower medical mistrust. So in other words, mistrust is not immutable. It can be fixed. It can be intervened upon. And in fact, we know that mistrust really thickens and thins as a function of cumulative interactions with systems and individuals. And so, in the studies that we’ve conducted, what we’ve learned is that men who report more frequent, everyday racism in their lived experience from day to day have more mistrust of medical organizations. And you can imagine how that might be rational, right? I mean, if you experience discrimination when you’re trying to get a cab, how likely might it be that you would experience discrimination in a situation when you’re wearing a backless gown and you’re at the most vulnerable position one can be? So I think that those are rational thoughts, but to intervene upon them we have to change the systems and structures that black men are faced with so that mistrust will become the natural response.

Audrey Hamilton: And how do we go about doing that? A psychologist, as healthcare providers, what can the system do to improve on that trust?

Wizdom Powell: Well, I think the first thing that we learned in our, in the work that we’ve conducted so far, is that women report having a more patient-centered experience. That they report lower levels of mistrust. So I think that one clear implication of that finding is that we need to address implicit bias on the parts of physicians, providers, nurses, frontlines staff in the face of black men when they do come to secure healthcare. I think the other part of that puzzle is to create more equitable healthcare systems that actually focus in on some of the gender role norms that can also push back on mistrust. So, if you feel more vulnerable, as we all do in healthcare transactions, and you have these norms that encourage you not to be closer or tell your doctor if you’re feeling a particular symptom, then you’re going to have more mistrust. But it’s all about the context of those exposures and that access to care. We also, I mean, men don’t have the kind of socialization experiences with healthcare systems that women and girls do. I mean, women and girls start interfacing with healthcare providers in their pre-teens because of biological changes. Unless a male is playing organized sports, in most cases, he doesn’t have a well boy visit in the same way that girls do. And that interface early in the life course has implications for how comfortable people feel with securing healthcare or interacting with physicians and doctors and nurses and so we have to create those opportunities for boys early on. And that speaks to a need for more policy level systems change that would encourage and facilitate that early contact with healthcare systems among boys and men.

Audrey Hamilton: Another study you conducted looked at the association between everyday racial discrimination and depression among black men. Based on that study and other research, how do you think racism plays a role in men’s health and mental health and why do some men fare better than others?

Wizdom Powell: So, there’s a long sort of now documented evidentiary base that establishes a link between exposure to racism and poor mental health. It took us a long way to get there, to be able to say definitively because now we have longitudinal data to support this causal association that you know, when you experience more discrimination you’re more likely to have depressive symptomatology. And that’s perhaps because experiencing discrimination chips away or exacts a sort of wear and tear on the spirit that can lead to the experience of more depressive symptomatology. I think it’s the frequency of it. It’s the chronicity of it. It’s also the fact that it’s subtle and hidden and difficult to document and therefore verify and get support around. You know, you might experience something very similar and not see that as a racial or racialized experience and because of that lack of validation that can also mean that people become more silent about what they experience. They just take it like a man and they just keep moving forward. I think that the reason we see the differences in men who experience depression as a consequence of racism has to do with a lot of the mechanisms and those things that can either exasperate or mitigate those exposures. I’ll tell you a little bit about what we’re learning thus far. The data are still unfolding. I mean, this is fairly new work, I think. So what we’ve learned is that when men are exposed to more frequent racism and they believe that they should shut down their emotions or suppress them as a normative response to stress, they have a more pronounced depressive symptom symptomatology sort of cascade. So in other words, experiencing discrimination is bad for your mental health, but if you do that and you believe that you should take it like a man, you know, take discrimination like a man, then you’re more likely to have pronounced depression and I think that speaks volumes to the need to develop interventions that help men to one, process, address, acknowledge the discrimination they’re experiencing and to give them a broader repertoire of coping possibilities. But, even while we do that, we still need to focus on the structural change. I think all of our interventions for black men who are exposed to discrimination cannot be around helping them to cope better with the discrimination they face. We have to shift the systems, the structures, the places where they live, work, pray and get healthcare so that those spaces feel humane, warm and opening and opened for them.

Audrey Hamilton: Well, this has been very interesting, Dr. Powell. Thank you so much for joining us.

Wizdom Powell: It’s my pleasure to be here. I think this is really critical work and I think we’re at a really interesting time in the national discourse around issues that affect boys and men of color, in particular, but especially those that affect male health disparities. I think that as we move forward with this work, what’s really important for us to keep in mind that this work about creating healthier families, communities and really ultimately a healthier nation.

Audrey Hamilton: Thanks for listening. To hear more episodes, please go to our website. With the American Psychological Association’s Speaking of Psychology, I’m Audrey Hamilton.


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The psychology of hunger

Amid the privations of World War II, 36 men voluntarily starved themselves so that researchers and relief workers could learn about how to help people recover from starvation.

By Dr. David Baker and Natacha Keramidas

In November 1944, 36 young men took up residence in the corridors and rooms of the University of Minnesota football stadium. They were not members of the football team. Rather, they were volunteers preparing for a nearly yearlong experiment on the psychological and physiological effects of starvation. Known as the Minnesota Starvation Experiment, the study was a project of the newly established Laboratory of Physiological Hygiene at the University of Minnesota, an interdisciplinary research institution with an emphasis on nutrition and human biology.

At the time, World War II was raging around the world, and so, too, were hunger and starvation. Over the centuries, people had recorded anecdotal reports of the effects of famine and starvation, but there was little in the scientific literature that described its physiological and psychological effects. Just as important, doctors and researchers didn't know how to help people rehabilitate and recover from starvation.

Eager to take on the challenge was Ancel Keys, PhD, the physiologist in charge of the Minnesota lab. The lab's chief psychologist, Josef Brozek, PhD, was responsible for gathering the psychological data on the effects of starvation. Brozek had completed his doctoral degree in 1937 at Charles University in Prague with interests in applied psychology, physiology and physical anthropology, and joined the Minnesota lab in 1941.

Among his duties, Brozek assisted in recruiting subjects for the study. In previous nutrition studies at the lab, Keys had drawn subjects from the ranks of the Civilian Public Service (CPS). During World War II, the CPS provided conscientious objectors an alternative to military combat service. These objectors were often referred to as human guinea pigs because of their willingness to serve in medical experiments. Keys knew from experience that many conscientious objectors were eager to do meaningful work that would benefit humanity and was confident that the starvation experiment would attract the needed volunteers.

Subject selection was stringent. Subjects had to be male, single and demonstrate good physical and mental health (largely based on the newly developed Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory). They also had to show an ability to get along well with others under trying circumstances and an interest in relief work. The final 36 men were selected from more than 200 volunteers and in November 1944 made their way to the University of Minnesota to begin their service.

The research protocol called for the men to lose 25 percent of their normal body weight. They spent the first three months of the study eating a normal diet of 3,200 calories a day, followed by six months of semi-starvation at 1,570 calories a day (divided between breakfast and lunch), then a restricted rehabilitation period of three months eating 2,000 to 3,200 calories a day, and finally an eight-week unrestricted rehabilitation period during which there were no limits on caloric intake. Their diet consisted of foods widely available in Europe during the war, mostly potatoes, root vegetables, bread and macaroni. The men were required to work 15 hours per week in the lab, walk 22 miles per week and participate in a variety of educational activities for 25 hours a week. Throughout the experiment, the researchers measured the physiological and psychological changes brought on by near starvation.

During the semi-starvation phase the changes were dramatic. Beyond the gaunt appearance of the men, there were significant decreases in their strength and stamina, body temperature, heart rate and sex drive. The psychological effects were significant as well. Hunger made the men obsessed with food. They would dream and fantasize about food, read and talk about food and savor the two meals a day they were given. They reported fatigue, irritability, depression and apathy. Interestingly, the men also reported decreases in mental ability, although mental testing of the men did not support this belief.

For some men, the study proved too difficult. Data from three subjects were excluded as a result of their breaking the diet and a fourth was excluded for not meeting expected weight loss goals.

The men and the study became subjects of national interest, even appearing in Life magazine in 1945. But in some ways, world events overtook the study. The war in Europe ended on May 8, 1945, barely halfway through the starvation phase of the experiment. Keys and the men worried that the data they had sacrificed for would not get to relief workers and the starving people they wished to serve in time to help them. Relief efforts were underway and there was no clear guide for rehabilitating those who were starving.

In response, members of Keys staff prepared a 70-page booklet, Men and Hunger: A Psychological Manual for Relief Workers. The book provided practical advice based on lessons learned in the lab.

The Minnesota Starvation Experiment ended in October 1945. Its results painted a vivid picture of the physical and psychological decline caused by starvation and offered guidelines on rehabilitation. In the restricted rehabilitation, calories were increased in increments. The experiment also looked at unrestricted rehabilitation and — even though participants were warned against it — some engaged in extreme overeating. Of the various diets and supplements that were studied during the rehabilitation phase of the experiment, the most reliable weight-gain strategy was high caloric intake. Simply put, starving people needed calories. Food and lots of it was the key to rehabilitation. It was as true for those released from the laboratory in Minnesota as it was for those freed from the privations of war in Europe.

In 1950, Keys, Brozek and other members of the team published their data in the two-volume set "The Biology of Human Starvation," which is still a landmark work on human starvation. The men who served as subjects went their separate ways, some into relief work, the ministry, education and other service-oriented occupations. Brozek, who had developed an interest in the history of psychology, would go on to Lehigh University and became a recognized psychology historian. Keys, who is well-known for his work on the Mediterranean diet, is also remembered for popularizing the body mass index. His contributions and visibility were significant enough to earn him a place on the cover of Time magazine in 1961.

The story of the Minnesota Starvation Experiment is many stories rolled into one. It reminds us of the privilege we have most of us can avoid the unpleasant sensation of hunger by simply reaching for something to eat. Hunger is debilitating and tragic, all the more so when it is created by human affairs. The Minnesota Starvation Experiment also tells the story of service and sacrifice among those who served in the Civilian Public Service and raised questions about the ethics of human experimentation. Mostly, it reminds us that in psychology studies of mind and body, science and practice can converge to deal with real problems in the real world.

David Baker, PhD, is the Margaret Clark Morgan executive director of the Center for the History of Psychology and professor of psychology at the University of Akron. Natacha Keramidas is a graduate assistant at the Center for the History of Psychology and a PhD student in the collaborative program in counseling psychology. Katharine S. Milar, PhD, is historical editor for "Time Capsule."


Battling the Boys: Educators Grapple with Violent Play

In her 30 years as a kindergarten teacher in Illinois and Massachusetts, Jane Katch has watched graham crackers, a pretzel, celery, tree bark and fingers all become transformed into imaginary guns and other weapons. And she has learned to work with, rather than against, the violent boyhood fantasies that accompany these transformations.

"When you try to ignore it, it doesn't go away. And when you try to oppress it, it comes out in sneaky ways," Katch said.

Not every teacher agrees. Schools have become battlegrounds between the adults who are repelled by the play violence they see and the children &mdash primarily boys &mdash who are obsessed with pretending to fight, capture, rescue and kill.

While some educators prohibit this behavior, other educators and researchers claim that banishing violent play from classrooms can be harmful to boys. It's a debate entangled in gender issues, since nearly all early-childhood educators are women, and they may be less comfortable than their male counterparts with boys' impulses.

While this behavior has been around far longer than toy guns and superhero movies &mdash boys appear to be hard-wired for more active and aggressive pursuits than girls &mdash many adults see this aggressive play being fueled by the violence portrayed or reported in the media.

"It is a very strange thing that is happening in our society," said Katch, who is the author of "Under Deadman's Skin: Discovering the Meaning of Children's Violent Play" (Beacon Press, 2002). "The violence in the media is more and more explicit, and at the same time culture is coming down harder and harder on little boys' own fantasies, which are actually much less violent than what is in the media."

Michael Thompson, a psychologist who co-wrote "Raising Cain: Protecting the Emotional Life of Boys" (Ballantine Books, 2000), rejects even this characterization of boys' play.

"There is no such thing as violent play," Thompson told LiveScience. "Violence and aggression are intended to hurt somebody. Play is not intended to hurt somebody. Play, rougher in its themes and rougher physically, is a feature of boyhood in every society on Earth."

Gender politics

Four-year-old boys play superhero or enact mock fights much more frequently than girls, who seem to favor house or family themes for playtime, according to a survey of 98 female teachers who worked with these kids. Meanwhile, games involving chasing, protecting and rescuing are played about as frequently by girls as by boys, according to the teachers.

There is, however, a marked difference in how the teachers respond to these games. Almost half the surveyed teachers reported stopping or redirecting boys' play several times a week or every day. Meanwhile, only 29 percent of teachers reported interfering with girls' more sedate play on a weekly basis, according to the research conducted by Mary Ellin Logue, of the University of Maine, and Hattie Harvey, of the University of Denver, published in the education journal The Constructivist.

Logue cited multiple reasons for female teachers' resistance to boys' aggressive play.

"We don't want to condone violence, we don't want to risk it getting out of control, and we don't want to deal with parents' wrath," Logue said.

When Logue and other teachers decided to allow play involving the imaginary "bad guys," the adversaries in boys' aggressive narratives, into their preschool program in Maine, one family left, some were anxious, but others were relieved, she said.

According to Thompson, this reaction often arises from mothers and female teachers who did not grow up playing the way boys play.

"They have a belief &mdash call it an urban myth &mdash that if boys play this way it will desensitize them to violence and they will grow up to be more violent. But it is a misunderstanding of what makes adults violent," Thompson said.

For example, he said, how often are a convicted murderer's actions explained by too many games of "cops and robbers" on the playground? There's no link between the two, according to Thompson.

Male teachers might be better attuned to boys' needs, but they are rare entrants into the worlds of preschools and kindergartens. In 2009, just 2.2 percent of pre-K and kindergarten teachers were men, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

"It is a very low-paying, low-status job, and we know who gets those jobs," Katch said.

Since that is not likely to change soon, women in those positions need to cultivate an understanding of little boys' play, she said.

British researcher Penny Holland, author of the book "We Don't Play With Guns Here: War Weapon and Superhero Play in the Early Years" (Open University Press, 2003), draws a parallel between the zero-tolerance policy once prevalent in playgrounds and nurseries in England and the focus by feminists during the women's liberation movement of the 1970s and early '80s on male-instigated violence, both individual and institutional.

"Perceived sexist patterns in children's play clearly presented themselves as an area in which women could take some control," she writes. England's zero-tolerance policy, which was later lifted, reflected the spirit of that earlier era, according to Holland.

Social development

By age 4, most children have developed complex play incorporating multiple character roles and symbolic props, according to Deborah Leong, a professor of psychology at Metropolitan State College of Denver, and Elena Bodrova, principal researcher with Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning.

Studies have linked play to both social and cognitive development. Through sophisticated play (including games like cops and robbers), children learn to delay gratification, prioritize, consider the perspectives of others, represent things symbolically, and control impulses, Leong and Bodrova wrote in the magazine Early Childhood Today in 2005.

Although it is difficult to make a direct connection between academics and play, there is also concern about a new gender gap as boys lag behind girls in many aspects of school all the way up to college enrollment. Evidence suggests this gap begins as soon as children enter classrooms.

A 2005 study by Walter Gilliam of the Yale University Child Study Center found that preschool boys were expelled more than 4.5 times as frequently as girls. The study suggests that challenging behavior is responsible, but does not offer additional insight.

But where does the urge to play fight and play shoot come from?

Diane Levin, an author and professor of education at Wheelock College in Massachusetts, became interested in what she describes as "war play" in the mid-1980s, when she began hearing from teachers that violent play had escalated within classrooms, and that bans no longer held back children clearly obsessed with playing war, police, superhero, or any other game involving violence.

From their research, Levin and her colleague Nancy Carlsson-Paige eventually linked the change with the Federal Communications Commission's 1984 decision to roll back policies limiting advertising on children's television. The decision opened the floodgates for programming designed to sell products to children, marketing violence to boys and prettiness to girls, Levin said. (Revisions to the decision during the Clinton administration did little to negate the problems created by deregulation, according to Levin.)

Perhaps magnifying the problem, psychologists think children can't recognize persuasive intent behind advertising until they reach about 7 or 8 years old.

Levin and Carlsson-Paige's research is detailed in "The War Play Dilemma: What Every Parent and Teacher Needs to Know" (Teacher's College Press, Second Edition, 2005).

Thompson sees the media playing a much less influential role. He cites superheroes, a common theme in boy play, as an example.

"The media has provided boys with particular superheroes to believe in and to attach their fantasies to, but the impulse to be a superhero is innate," Thompson said. "Boys are innately wired for dominance and that is going to affect the kinds of stories they like and the kind of games they play."

The heroic themes of boy play have been around for a while, "at least since Homer," Thompson said. "So I just see boy play as mythic battling."

Co-opting the bad guys

Levin, meanwhile, finds the rise of play drawing on shows like "He-Man" or "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" alarming, because by simply mimicking the violence on these shows, children could learn harmful lessons. The dilemma with violent play is how to transfer it into something less harmful that still meets kids' needs, she said.

Other educators have reached a similar conclusion.

For Katch, this meant working with students to establish rules &ndash like no chopping off of body parts &ndash to transform a killing game the children had invented, called Suicide, into something that gave kids a chance to listen to each other, express their own opinions, create compromises that would work for everyone and talk about controlling real aggression.

At the University of Maine's Katherine M. Durst Child Development Learning Center in Orono, Logue and her colleagues launched a program in which they incorporated activities that involved imaginary "bad guys."

"Day after day, the bad guys appeared. We redirected the play and it would always temporarily subside, but soon to reappear having been transformed into a new theme or new character names," Logue and her colleagues wrote in a 2008 article published in the journal The Constructivist.

But after conversations and a letter-writing exercise intended to permanently banish these fictitious bad guys, the teachers reconsidered.

"We decided that having banished the bad guys diminished the running and noise level but, also, the pretend play and energy within the classroom. No more extravagant stories were being told and the group of boys who so passionately desired the bad guys were having more difficulty sustaining long periods of play," they wrote.

So, the teachers decided to have students resume writing letters daily to these imaginary figures. Then teachers noticed something else: When the children's play allowed for demonstrations of courage, power and high levels of activity, the children did not enact narratives involving fighting the imaginary bad guys.

The bad guys serve a purpose for the children, Logue said.

"They are also working on impulse control, they are trying really hard to be good, but it's really hard to be good," she said. "These bad guys give them a way to externalize that part of them that they are trying to conquer."


Contents

Childhood

Charles Manson was born on November 12, 1934, to 16-year-old Kathleen Manson-Bower-Cavender, [8] née Maddox (1918–1973), [9] in the University of Cincinnati Academic Health Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. He was first named "no name Maddox". [10] [ page needed ] [11] [12] Within weeks, he was called Charles Milles Maddox. [13] [14]

Manson's biological father appears to have been Colonel Walker Henderson Scott Sr. (1910–1954) [15] of Catlettsburg, Kentucky, against whom Kathleen Maddox filed a paternity suit that resulted in an agreed judgment in 1937. Manson may never have known his biological father. [10] [ page needed ] [12] Scott worked intermittently in local mills, and had a local reputation as a con artist. He allowed Maddox to believe that he was an army colonel, although "Colonel" was merely his given name. When Maddox told Scott that she was pregnant, he told her he had been called away on army business after several months she realized he had no intention of returning. [16]

In August 1934, before Manson's birth, Maddox married William Eugene Manson (1909–1961), a "laborer" at a dry cleaning business. Maddox often went on drinking sprees with her brother Luther, leaving Charles with multiple babysitters. They divorced on April 30, 1937, after William alleged "gross neglect of duty" by Maddox. Charles retained William's last name, Manson. [17] On August 1, 1939, Luther and Kathleen Maddox were arrested for assault and robbery. Kathleen and Luther were sentenced to five and ten years of imprisonment, respectively. [18]

Manson was placed in the home of an aunt and uncle in McMechen, West Virginia. [19] His mother was paroled in 1942. Manson later characterized the first weeks after she returned from prison as the happiest time in his life. [20] Weeks after Maddox's release, Manson's family moved to Charleston, West Virginia, [21] where Manson continually played truant and his mother spent her evenings drinking. [22] She was arrested for grand larceny, but not convicted. [23] The family later moved to Indianapolis, where Maddox met an alcoholic named Lewis (no first name) through Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, and married him in August 1943. [22]

First offenses

In an interview with Diane Sawyer, Manson said that when he was nine, he set his school on fire. [24] Manson also got in trouble for truancy and petty theft. Although there were a lack of foster home placements, in 1947, at the age of 13, Manson was placed in the Gibault School for Boys in Terre Haute, Indiana, a school for male delinquents run by Catholic priests. [25] Gibault was a strict school, where punishment for even the tiniest infraction included beatings with either a wooden paddle or a leather strap. Manson ran away from Gibault and slept in the woods, under bridges, and wherever else he could find shelter. [26]

Manson fled home to his mother, and spent Christmas 1947 in McMechen, at his aunt and uncle's house. [27] His mother returned him to Gibault. Ten months later, he ran away to Indianapolis. [28] In 1948, in Indianapolis, Manson committed his first known crime by robbing a grocery store. At first the robbery was simply to find something to eat. However, Manson found a cigar box containing just over a hundred dollars, and he took the money. He used the money to rent a room on Indianapolis's Skid Row and to buy food. [29]

For a time, Manson tried to go straight by getting a job delivering messages for Western Union. However, he quickly began to supplement his wages through petty theft. [26] He was eventually caught, and in 1949 a sympathetic judge sent him to Boys Town, a juvenile facility in Omaha, Nebraska. [30] After four days at Boys Town, he and fellow student Blackie Nielson obtained a gun and stole a car. They used it to commit two armed robberies on their way to the home of Nielson's uncle in Peoria, Illinois. [31] [32] Nielson's uncle was a professional thief, and when the boys arrived he allegedly took them on as apprentices. [25] Manson was arrested two weeks later during a nighttime raid on a Peoria store. In the investigation that followed, he was linked to his two earlier armed robberies. He was sent to the Indiana Boys School, a strict reform school. [33]

At the school, other students allegedly raped Manson with the encouragement of a staff member, and he was repeatedly beaten. He ran away from the school eighteen times. [30] While at the school, Manson developed a self-defense technique he later called the "insane game". When he was physically unable to defend himself, he would screech, grimace and wave his arms to convince aggressors that he was insane. After a number of failed attempts, he escaped with two other boys in February 1951. [34] [32] The three escapees were robbing filling stations while attempting to drive to California in stolen cars when they were arrested in Utah. For the federal crime of driving a stolen car across state lines, Manson was sent to Washington, D.C.'s National Training School for Boys. [35] On arrival he was given aptitude tests which determined that he was illiterate, but had an above-average IQ of 109. His case worker deemed him aggressively antisocial. [34] [32]

First imprisonment

On a psychiatrist's recommendation, Manson was transferred in October 1951 to Natural Bridge Honor Camp, a minimum security institution. [32] His aunt visited him and told administrators she would let him stay at her house and would help him find work. Manson had a parole hearing scheduled for February 1952. However, in January, he was caught raping a boy at knifepoint. Manson was transferred to the Federal Reformatory in Petersburg, Virginia. There he committed a further "eight serious disciplinary offenses, three involving homosexual acts". He was then moved to a maximum security reformatory at Chillicothe, Ohio, where he was expected to remain until his release on his 21st birthday in November 1955. Good behavior led to an early release in May 1954, to live with his aunt and uncle in McMechen. [36]

In January 1955, Manson married a hospital waitress named Rosalie Jean Willis. [37] [ page needed ] Around October, about three months after he and his pregnant wife arrived in Los Angeles in a car he had stolen in Ohio, Manson was again charged with a federal crime for taking the vehicle across state lines. After a psychiatric evaluation, he was given five years' probation. Manson's failure to appear at a Los Angeles hearing on an identical charge filed in Florida resulted in his March 1956 arrest in Indianapolis. His probation was revoked he was sentenced to three years' imprisonment at Terminal Island, San Pedro, California. [32]

While Manson was in prison, Rosalie gave birth to their son Charles Manson Jr. During his first year at Terminal Island, Manson received visits from Rosalie and his mother, who were now living together in Los Angeles. In March 1957, when the visits from his wife ceased, his mother informed him Rosalie was living with another man. Less than two weeks before a scheduled parole hearing, Manson tried to escape by stealing a car. He was given five years' probation and his parole was denied. [32]

Second imprisonment

Manson received five years' parole in September 1958, the same year in which Rosalie received a decree of divorce. By November, he was pimping a 16-year-old girl and was receiving additional support from a girl with wealthy parents. In September 1959, he pleaded guilty to a charge of attempting to cash a forged U.S. Treasury check, which he claimed to have stolen from a mailbox the latter charge was later dropped. He received a 10-year suspended sentence and probation after a young woman named Leona, who had an arrest record for prostitution, made a "tearful plea" before the court that she and Manson were "deeply in love . and would marry if Charlie were freed". [32] Before the year's end, the woman did marry Manson, possibly so she would not be required to testify against him. [32]

Manson took Leona and another woman to New Mexico for purposes of prostitution, resulting in him being held and questioned for violating the Mann Act. Though he was released, Manson correctly suspected that the investigation had not ended. When he disappeared in violation of his probation, a bench warrant was issued. An indictment for violation of the Mann Act followed in April 1960. [32] Following the arrest of one of the women for prostitution, Manson was arrested in June in Laredo, Texas, and was returned to Los Angeles. For violating his probation on the check-cashing charge, he was ordered to serve his ten-year sentence. [32]

Manson spent a year trying unsuccessfully to appeal the revocation of his probation. In July 1961, he was transferred from the Los Angeles County Jail to the United States Penitentiary at McNeil Island, Washington. There, he took guitar lessons from Barker–Karpis gang leader Alvin "Creepy" Karpis, and obtained from another inmate a contact name of someone at Universal Studios in Hollywood, Phil Kaufman. [38] According to Jeff Guinn's 2013 biography of Manson, his mother moved to Washington State to be closer to him during his McNeil Island incarceration, working nearby as a waitress. [39]

Although the Mann Act charge had been dropped, the attempt to cash the Treasury check was still a federal offense. Manson's September 1961 annual review noted he had a "tremendous drive to call attention to himself", an observation echoed in September 1964. [32] In 1963, Leona was granted a divorce. During the process she alleged that she and Manson had a son, Charles Luther. [32] According to a popular urban legend, Manson auditioned unsuccessfully for the Monkees in late 1965 this is refuted by the fact that Manson was still incarcerated at McNeil Island at that time. [40]

In June 1966, Manson was sent for the second time to Terminal Island in preparation for early release. By the time of his release day on March 21, 1967, he had spent more than half of his 32 years in prisons and other institutions. This was mainly because he had broken federal laws. Federal sentences were, and remain, much more severe than state sentences for many of the same offenses. Telling the authorities that prison had become his home, he requested permission to stay. [32]

Cult formation

After being discharged from prison in 1967, Manson began attracting a group of followers, mostly young women, from around California. They were later known as the Manson Family. [41] The core members of Manson's group following included: Charles 'Tex' Watson, a musician and former actor Robert Beausoleil, a former musician and pornographic actor Mary Brunner, previously a librarian Susan Atkins Linda Kasabian Patricia Krenwinkel and Leslie Van Houten. [42] [43] [44]

Murders

The Manson Family developed into a doomsday cult when Manson became fixated on the idea of an imminent apocalyptic race war between America's black population and the larger white population. A white supremacist, [45] [46] Manson believed that black people in America would rise up and kill all whites except for Manson and his "Family", but that they were not intelligent enough to survive on their own they would need a white man to lead them, and so they would serve Manson as their "master". [47] [48] Late in 1968, Manson adopted the term "Helter Skelter", taken from a song on the Beatles' recently released White Album, to refer to this upcoming war. [49]

In early August 1969, Manson encouraged his followers to start Helter Skelter, by committing murders in Los Angeles and making it appear to be racially motivated. The Manson Family gained national notoriety after the murder of actress Sharon Tate and four others in her home on August 8 and 9, 1969, [50] and Leno and Rosemary LaBianca the next day. Tex Watson and three other members of the Family executed the Tate–LaBianca murders, allegedly acting under Manson's instructions. [51] [52] While it was later accepted at trial that Manson never expressly ordered the murders, his behavior was deemed to warrant a conviction of first degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder. Evidence pointed to Manson's obsession with inciting a race war by killing those he thought were "pigs" and his belief that this would show the "nigger" how to do the same. [4] Family members were also responsible for other assaults, thefts, crimes, and the attempted assassination of President Gerald Ford in Sacramento by Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme. [53]

While it is often thought that Manson never murdered or attempted to murder anyone himself, true crime writer James Buddy Day, in his book Hippie Cult Leader: The Last Words of Charles Manson, claimed that Manson shot drug dealer Bernard Crowe on July 1, 1969. [54] Crowe survived. [55]

Trial

The State of California tried Manson for the Tate and LaBianca murders with co-defendants, Leslie Van Houten, Susan Atkins, and Patricia Krenwinkel. Co-defendant Tex Watson was tried at a later date after being extradited from Texas. [56]

The trial began on July 15, 1970. Manson appeared wearing fringed buckskins, his typical clothing at Spahn Ranch. [57]

On July 24, 1970 — the first day of testimony — Manson appeared in court with an "X" carved into his forehead. His followers issued a statement from Manson saying "I have "X'd myself from your world". [58] The following day, Manson's co-defendants, Van Houten, Atkins, and Krenwinkel, also appeared in court, with an "X" carved in their foreheads. [59] [60]

Members of the Manson Family camped outside of the courthouse, and held a vigil on a street corner, because they were excluded from the courtroom for being disruptive. Some of Manson's followers also carved crosses into their heads. [58] During the trial, members of the Manson Family appeared in saffron robes, and threatened to immolate themselves if Manson was convicted – just as nuns in Vietnam had done in protest of the war. [57] [61]

The State presented dozens of witnesses during the trial. However, its primary witness was Linda Kasabian, who was present during the Tate murders on August 8–9, 1969. Kasabian provided graphic testimony of the Tate murders, which she observed from outside the house. She was also in the car with Manson on the following evening, when he ordered the LaBianca killings. Kasabian spent days on the witness stand, being cross-examined by the defendants' lawyers. After testifying, Kasabian went into hiding for the next forty years. [10] [ page needed ]

In early August 1970, President Richard Nixon told reporters that he believed that Manson was guilty of the murders, "either directly or indirectly". [62] Manson obtained a copy of the newspaper and held up the headline to the jury. [10] [ page needed ] The defendants' attorneys then called for a mistrial, arguing that their clients had allegedly killed far fewer people than "Nixon's war machine in Vietnam". [62] Judge Charles H. Older polled each member of the jury, to determine whether each juror saw the headline and whether it affected his or her ability to make an independent decision. All of the jurors affirmed that they could still decide independently. [10] [ page needed ] Shortly after, the female defendants – Atkins, Krenwinkel and Van Houten – were removed from the room for chanting, "Nixon says we are guilty. So why go on?" [10] [ page needed ]

On October 5, 1970, Manson attempted to attack Judge Older while the jury was present in the room. Manson first threatened Older, and then jumped over his lawyer's table with a sharpened pencil, in the direction of Older. Manson was restrained before reaching the judge. While being led out of the courtroom, Manson screamed at Older, "In the name of Christian justice, someone should cut your head off!" Meanwhile, the female defendants began chanting something in Latin. Judge Older began wearing a .38 caliber pistol to the trial afterwards. [63]

On November 16, 1970, the State of California rested its case after presenting twenty-two weeks worth of evidence. The defendants then stunned the courtroom by announcing that they had no witnesses to present, and rested their case. [64]

Manson's testimony

Immediately after defendants' counsel rested their case, the three female defendants shouted that they wanted to testify. Their attorneys advised the court, in chambers, that they opposed their clients testifying. Apparently, the female defendants wanted to testify that Manson had had nothing to do with the murders. [65]

The following day, Manson himself announced that he too wanted to testify. The judge allowed Manson to testify outside the presence of the jury. He stated as follows:

These children that come at you with knives, they are your children. You taught them. I didn't teach them. I just tried to help them stand up. Most of the people at the ranch that you call the Family were just people that you did not want. [65]

Manson continued, equating his actions to those of society at large:

I know this: that in your hearts and your souls, you are as much responsible for the Vietnam war as I am for killing these people. . I can't judge any of you. I have no malice against you and no ribbons for you. But I think that it is high time that you all start looking at yourselves, and judging the lie that you live in. [66]

Manson concluded, claiming that he too was a creation of a system that he viewed as fundamentally violent and unjust:

My father is the jailhouse. My father is your system. . I am only what you made me. I am only a reflection of you. . You want to kill me? Ha! I am already dead – have been all my life. I've spent twenty-three years in tombs that you have built. [66]

After Manson finished speaking, Judge Older offered to let him testify before the jury. Manson replied that it was not necessary. Manson then told the female defendants that they no longer needed to testify. [67]

On November 30, 1970, Leslie Van Houten's attorney, Ronald Hughes, failed to appear for the closing arguments in the trial. [67] He was later found dead in a California state park. His body was badly decomposed, and it was impossible to tell the cause of death. Hughes had disagreed with Manson during the trial, taking the position that his client, Van Houten, should not testify to claim that Manson had no involvement with the murders. Some have alleged that Hughes may have been murdered by the Manson Family. [68]

On January 25, 1971, the jury found Manson, Krenwinkel and Atkins guilty of first degree murder in all seven of the Tate and LaBianca killings. The jury found Van Houten guilty of murder in the first degree in the LaBianca killings. [69]

Sentencing

After the convictions, the court held a separate hearing before the same jury to determine if the defendants should receive the death sentence.

Each of the three female defendants – Atkins, Van Houten, and Krenwinkel – took the stand. They provided graphic details of the murders and testified that Manson was not involved. According to the female defendants, they had committed the crimes in order to help fellow Manson Family member Bobby Beausoleil get out of jail, where he was being held for the murder of Gary Hinman. The female defendants testified that the Tate-LaBianca murders were intended to be copycat crimes, similar to the Hinman killing. Atkins, Krenwinkel and Van Houten claimed they did this under the direction of the state's prime witness, Linda Kasabian. The defendants did not express remorse for the killings. [70]

On March 4, 1971, during the sentencing hearings, Manson trimmed his beard to a fork and shaved his head, telling the media, "I am the Devil, and the Devil always has a bald head!" However, the female defendants did not immediately shave their own heads. The state prosecutor, Vincent Bugliosi, later speculated in his book, Helter Skelter, that they refrained from doing so, in order to not appear to be completely controlled by Manson (as they had when they each carved an "X" in their foreheads, earlier in the trial). [71]

On March 29, 1971, the jury sentenced all four defendants to death. When the female defendants were led into the courtroom, each of them had shaved their heads, as had Manson. After hearing the sentence, Atkins shouted to the jury, "Better lock your doors and watch your kids." [72]

The Manson murder trial was the longest murder trial in American history when it occurred, lasting nine and a half months. The trial was among the most publicized American criminal cases of the twentieth century and was dubbed the "trial of the century". The jury had been sequestered for 225 days, longer than any jury before it. The trial transcript alone ran to 209 volumes or 31,716 pages. [72]

Post-trial events

Manson was admitted to state prison from Los Angeles County on April 22, 1971, for seven counts of first-degree murder and one count of conspiracy to commit murder for the deaths of Abigail Ann Folger, Wojciech Frykowski, Steven Earl Parent, Sharon Tate Polanski, Jay Sebring, and Leno and Rosemary LaBianca. As the death penalty was ruled unconstitutional in 1972, Manson was re-sentenced to life with the possibility of parole. His initial death sentence was modified to life on February 2, 1977.

On December 13, 1971, Manson was convicted of first-degree murder in Los Angeles County Court for the July 25, 1969 death of musician Gary Hinman. He was also convicted of first-degree murder for the August 1969 death of Donald Jerome "Shorty" Shea. Following the 1972 decision of California v. Anderson, California's death sentences were ruled unconstitutional and that "any prisoner now under a sentence of death . may file a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the superior court inviting that court to modify its judgment to provide for the appropriate alternative punishment of life imprisonment or life imprisonment without possibility of parole specified by statute for the crime for which he was sentenced to death." [73] Manson was thus eligible to apply for parole after seven years' incarceration. [74] His first parole hearing took place on November 16, 1978, at California Medical Facility in Vacaville, where his petition was rejected. [75] [76]

1980s–1990s

In the 1980s, Manson gave four interviews to the mainstream media. The first, recorded at California Medical Facility and aired on June 13, 1981, was by Tom Snyder for NBC's The Tomorrow Show. The second, recorded at San Quentin State Prison and aired on March 7, 1986, was by Charlie Rose for CBS News Nightwatch, and it won the national news Emmy Award for Best Interview in 1987. [77] The third, with Geraldo Rivera in 1988, was part of the journalist's prime-time special on Satanism. [78] At least as early as the Snyder interview, Manson's forehead bore a swastika in the spot where the X carved during his trial had been. [79]

Nikolas Schreck conducted an interview with Manson for his documentary Charles Manson Superstar (1989). Schreck concluded that Manson was not insane but merely acting that way out of frustration. [80] [81]

On September 25, 1984, Manson was imprisoned in the California Medical Facility at Vacaville when inmate Jan Holmstrom poured paint thinner on him and set him on fire, causing second and third degree burns on over 20 percent of his body. Holmstrom explained that Manson had objected to his Hare Krishna chants and verbally threatened him. [75] [ failed verification ]

After 1989, Manson was housed in the Protective Housing Unit at California State Prison, Corcoran, in Kings County. The unit housed inmates whose safety would be endangered by general-population housing. He had also been housed at San Quentin State Prison, [77] California Medical Facility in Vacaville, [75] [ failed verification ] Folsom State Prison and Pelican Bay State Prison. [82] [ citation needed ] In June 1997, a prison disciplinary committee found that Manson had been trafficking drugs. [82] He was moved from Corcoran State Prison to Pelican Bay State Prison a month later. [82]

2000s–2017

On September 5, 2007, MSNBC aired The Mind of Manson, a complete version of a 1987 interview at California's San Quentin State Prison. The footage of the "unshackled, unapologetic, and unruly" Manson had been considered "so unbelievable" that only seven minutes of it had originally been broadcast on Today, for which it had been recorded. [83]

In March 2009, a photograph of Manson showing a receding hairline, grizzled gray beard and hair, and the swastika tattoo still prominent on his forehead was released to the public by California corrections officials. [84]

In 2010, the Los Angeles Times reported that Manson was caught with a cell phone in 2009 and had contacted people in California, New Jersey, Florida and British Columbia. A spokesperson for the California Department of Corrections stated that it was not known if Manson had used the phone for criminal purposes. [85] Manson also recorded an album of acoustic pop songs with additional production by Henry Rollins, titled Completion. Only five copies were pressed: two belong to Rollins, while the other three are presumed to have been with Manson. The album remains unreleased. [86]

On January 1, 2017, Manson was suffering from gastrointestinal bleeding at California State Prison in Corcoran when he was rushed to Mercy Hospital in downtown Bakersfield. A source told the Los Angeles Times that Manson was seriously ill, [87] and TMZ reported that his doctors considered him "too weak" for surgery. [88] He was returned to prison on January 6, and the nature of his treatment was not disclosed. [89] On November 15, 2017, an unauthorized source said that Manson had returned to a hospital in Bakersfield, [90] but the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation did not confirm this in conformity with state and federal medical privacy laws. [91] He died from cardiac arrest resulting from respiratory failure and colon cancer at the hospital on November 19. [2] [92] [93]

Three people stated their intention to claim Manson's estate and body. [94] [95] [96] Manson's grandson Jason Freeman stated his intent to take possession of Manson's remains and personal effects. [97] Manson's pen-pal Michael Channels claimed to have a Manson will dated February 14, 2002, which left Manson's entire estate and Manson's body to Channels. [98] [99] Manson's friend Ben Gurecki claimed to have a Manson will dated January 2017 which gives the estate and Manson's body to Matthew Roberts, another alleged son of Manson. [94] [95] In 2012, CNN ran a DNA match to see if Freeman and Roberts were related to each other and found that they were not. According to CNN, two prior attempts to DNA match Roberts with genetic material from Manson failed, but the results were reportedly contaminated. [100] On March 12, 2018, the Kern County Superior Court in California decided in favor of Freeman in regard to Manson's body. Freeman had Manson cremated on March 20, 2018. [101] As of February 7, 2020, Channels and Freeman still had petitions to California courts attempting to establish the heir of Manson's estate. At that time, Channels was attempting to force Freeman to submit DNA to the court for testing. [102]

Involvement with Scientology

Manson began studying Scientology while incarcerated with the help of fellow inmate Lanier Rayner, and in July 1961, Manson listed his religion as Scientology. [103] A September 1961 prison report argues that Manson "appears to have developed a certain amount of insight into his problems through his study of this discipline". [104] Upon his release in 1967, Manson traveled to Los Angeles where he reportedly "met local Scientologists and attended several parties for movie stars". [105] [106] [107] Manson completed 150 hours of auditing. [108] Manson's "right hand man", Bruce M. Davis, worked at the Church of Scientology headquarters in London from November 1968 to April 1969." [109]

Relationships and alleged child

In 2009, Los Angeles disk jockey Matthew Roberts released correspondence and other evidence indicating that he might be Manson's biological son. Roberts' biological mother claims that she was a member of the Manson Family who left in mid-1967 after being raped by Manson she returned to her parents' home to complete the pregnancy, gave birth on March 22, 1968, and put Roberts up for adoption. CNN conducted a DNA test between Matthew Roberts and Manson's known biological grandson Jason Freeman in 2012, showing that Roberts and Freeman did not share DNA. [100] Roberts subsequently attempted to establish that Manson was his father through a direct DNA test which proved definitively that Roberts and Manson were not related. [110]

In 2014, it was announced [ by whom? ] that the imprisoned Manson was engaged to 26-year-old Afton Elaine Burton and had obtained a marriage license on November 7. [111] Manson gave Burton the nickname "Star". She had been visiting him in prison for at least nine years and maintained several websites that proclaimed his innocence. [112] The wedding license expired on February 5, 2015, without a marriage ceremony taking place. [113] Journalist Daniel Simone reported that the wedding was cancelled after Manson discovered that Burton only wanted to marry him so that she and friend Craig Hammond could use his corpse as a tourist attraction after his death. [113] [114] According to Simone, Manson believed that he would never die and may simply have used the possibility of marriage as a way to encourage Burton and Hammond to continue visiting him and bringing him gifts. Burton said on her website that the reason that the marriage did not take place was merely logistical. Manson was suffering from an infection and had been in a prison medical facility for two months and could not receive visitors. She said that she still hoped that the marriage license would be renewed and the marriage would take place. [113]

Psychology

On April 11, 2012, Manson was denied release at his 12th parole hearing, which he did not attend. After his March 27, 1997, parole hearing, Manson refused to attend any of his later hearings. The panel at that hearing noted that Manson had a "history of controlling behavior" and "mental health issues" including schizophrenia and paranoid delusional disorder, and was too great a danger to be released. [115] The panel also noted that Manson had received 108 rules violation reports, had no indication of remorse, no insight into the causative factors of the crimes, lacked understanding of the magnitude of the crimes, had an exceptional, callous disregard for human suffering and had no parole plans. [116] At the April 11, 2012, parole hearing, it was determined that Manson would not be reconsidered for parole for another 15 years, i.e. not before 2027, at which time he would have been 92 years old. [117]

Cultural impact

Beginning in January 1970, the left-wing newspapers Los Angeles Free Press and Tuesday's Child embraced Manson as a hero-figure, and Tuesday's Child proclaimed him "Man of the Year". In June 1970, Rolling Stone made him their cover story in "Charles Manson: The Incredible Story of the Most Dangerous Man Alive". [118] A Rolling Stone writer visited the Los Angeles District Attorney's office while preparing that story, [119] and he was shocked by a photograph of the "Healter [sic] Skelter" that Manson's disciples had written on a wall in their victim's blood. [120] Prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi pointed out the dispute in the underground press over whether Manson was "Christ returned" or "a sick symbol of our times". [ citation needed ]

Bernardine Dohrn of the Weather Underground reportedly said of the Tate murders: "Dig it, first they killed those pigs, then they ate dinner in the same room with them, then they even shoved a fork into a victim's stomach. Wild!" [121] Neo-Nazi and Manson follower James Mason founded the Universal Order, a group that has influenced other movements such as the neo-Nazi terrorist group the Atomwaffen Division. The Universal Order's name and logo is a swastika between the scales of justice, remotely designed by Manson. [ clarification needed ] Bugliosi quoted a BBC employee's assertion that a "neo-Manson cult" existed in Europe, represented by approximately 70 rock bands playing songs by Manson and "songs in support of him". [74]

Music

Manson was a struggling musician, seeking to make it big in Hollywood between 1967 and 1969. The Beach Boys did a cover of one of his songs. Other songs were publicly released only after the trial for the Tate murders started. On March 6, 1970, LIE, an album of Manson music, was released. [122] [123] [124] [125] This included "Cease to Exist", a Manson composition the Beach Boys had recorded with modified lyrics and the title "Never Learn Not to Love". [126] [127] Over the next couple of months only about 300 of the album's 2,000 copies sold. [128]

There have been several other releases of Manson recordings – both musical and spoken. One of these, The Family Jams, includes two compact discs of Manson's songs recorded by the Family in 1970, after Manson and the others had been arrested. Guitar and lead vocals are supplied by Steve Grogan [129] [ failed verification ] additional vocals are supplied by Lynette Fromme, Sandra Good, Catherine Share, and others. [ citation needed ] One Mind, an album of music, poetry, and spoken word, new at the time of its release, in April 2005, was put out under a Creative Commons license. [130] [131]

American rock band Guns N' Roses recorded Manson's "Look at Your Game, Girl", included as an unlisted 13th track on their 1993 album "The Spaghetti Incident?" [74] [ failed verification ] [132] [133] "My Monkey", which appears on Portrait of an American Family by the American rock band Marilyn Manson, includes the lyrics "I had a little monkey / I sent him to the country and I fed him on gingerbread / Along came a choo-choo / Knocked my monkey cuckoo / And now my monkey's dead." These lyrics are from Manson's "Mechanical Man", [134] which is heard on LIE. Crispin Glover covered "Never Say 'Never' to Always" on his album The Big Problem ≠ The Solution. The Solution=Let It Be released in 1989.

Musical performers such as Kasabian, [135] Spahn Ranch, [136] and Marilyn Manson [137] derived their names from Manson and his lore.


Abstract

The accumulation of anecdotal accounts of copycat crime suggests that popular culture plays an important role in some instances and aspects of criminal behavior. However, there is little empirical research specifically examining the copycat effect on criminal behavior. Questions remain regarding the nature and extent of copycat crime, cultural influences that shape the copycat effect, the role and relevance of popular culture as a motivating factor for criminal behavior, and issues the copycat phenomenon raises for legal determinations of criminal responsibility. This paper reviews the research literature and contemporary case examples of copycat crime with attention to the influence of mass media technology on criminal behavior, the mechanisms of media-mediated crime, and the relevance of understanding the copycat phenomenon for determinations of criminal responsibility in insanity cases. An integrative theoretical model of copycat crime is proposed, a methodological framework for empirically investigating copycat crime is presented, and practical implications for understanding the role of the copycat effect on criminal behavior are discussed.


Watch the video: Ch 3 What a Foolish Boy - The Boys War (May 2022).


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