Date of Award

2001

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Business Honours

Faculty

Faculty of Business and Public Management

First Advisor

Charles Edwards

Abstract

Boredom, although a regular occurrence among the general youth population of the modern society and a possible causal factor of truancy, drug use, suicide and crime, has been widely neglected within the fields of education, psychology, sociology, and criminology. Since it is the intention of this thesis to show that boredom is a causal factor of youth criminality which must be recognised and studied further, it is essential that boredom is thoroughly researched for both theoretical and practical reasons within the field of criminology. In a two part documentary analysis on boredom and youth criminality, this thesis demonstrates what makes an activity or situation boring, what causes a person to experience boredom, and how boredom is connected to youth criminality and crime. Conceptually, boredom has been described variously as a transitory negative state, an emotion, and an adverse drive, and has been shown to be more prevalent among males than females. Younger members of society are also found to be more susceptible to boredom than older individuals. It is well documented that youth crime is predominantly committed by males, increases significantly during adolescence, and peaks between the ages of 18 and 20. It will therefore, be postulated in this thesis that boredom may explain both the predominance of adolescent male offenders and the reason for their offending. Empirical research will, however, be necessary to test this hypothesis. In connection with youth criminality, high sensation seekers and some extroverts are also more likely to experience both boredom and crime. Interestingly, as a result of socialisation, males from an early age are more likely than females to be sensation and thrill seekers. However, since gender roles are becoming more androgynous, this thesis also suggests that more females will begin to experience boredom similar to their male counterparts which may result in further increases in female offending. It therefore will be important to also test this hypothesis in the near future.

Included in

Criminology Commons

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