Extending social disorganization theory: A multilevel approach to the study of violence among persons with mental illnesses

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Abstract

Prior studies of violence among individuals with mental illnesses have focused almost exclusively on individual-level characteristics. In this study, I examine whether the structural correlates of neighborhood social disorganization also explain variation in violence. I use data on 270 psychiatric patients who were treated and discharged from an acute inpatient facility combined with tract-level data from the 1990 U.S. Census. I find that living in a socially disorganized neighborhood increased the probability of violence among the sample, an effect that was not mediated by self-reported social supports. Implications for future research in the areas of violence and mental illness are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1043-1074
Number of pages32
JournalCriminology
Volume38
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Law

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