Race, neighborhood disadvantage, and violence among persons with mental disorders: The importance of contextual measurement

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Abstract

The individualistic fallacy (i.e., the fallacy of assuming that individual-level outcomes can be explained exclusively in terms of individual-level characteristics) is a problem with most research on violence, and is particularly problematic in research on mental disorder and violence. This article illustrates the importance of measuring community context by showing that race is not an important predictor of violence among persons with mental disorders when neighborhood disadvantage is controlled statistically. More generally, these results suggest that researchers run the risk of perpetuating the individualistic fallacy in studies of violence by persons with mental disorders when they use individual-level risk factors as predictors, but do not control for community context.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)449-456
Number of pages8
JournalLaw and Human Behavior
Volume24
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 21 2000

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mental disorder
Violence
Mental Disorders
violence
human being
Research
community
Research Personnel
Person
Contextual
Fallacies
Predictors

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Law

Cite this

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