- When I don't get what I want, I take it because it's mine. I-D compensation and incarcerated adolescents in a delayed-return society: an application of Martin's theory
- Psychiatry, Psychology and Law
- Volume | Issue number
- 20 | 5
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Research Institute of Child Development and Education (RICDE)
Martin (1999a) proposes that present-day society differs from mankind's evolutionary past by a change from immediate returns, when living as hunter-gatherers, to a delayed-return system with the onset of agriculture and urban living. He assumes that a delayed-return system lacks frequent feedback necessary for goal orientation and perceived control, which may lead to various social psychological thinking errors, cognitive distortions and an external locus of control. This study was aimed at examining whether Martin's I-D compensation theory could be applied in a sample of incarcerated juvenile delinquents in The Netherlands who frequently lack adequate feedback and control. Using questionnaires (N = 144) and semi-structured interviews (N = 40) with adolescents in secure institutional facilities, the results showed that feedback in the form of responsiveness of group workers was positively related to behavioural competence and subsequently to fewer criminal cognitions and self-serving cognitive distortions. In addition, self-serving cognitive distortions were positively associated with an external locus of control. These results provide insight into antecedents of criminal behaviour, and can be used to develop efficacious institutional treatment for juvenile delinquents.
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