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- Volume 20, Issue 2, 2007
Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology - Volume 20, Issue 2, 2007
Volumes & issues
Volume 20, Issue 2, 2007
Author R. PeacockSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 20, pp I –III (2007)More Less
Given the large-scale socio-political transformation since the advent of democracy in South Africa, local cultures can be best regarded as change-oriented cultures. Humanity, however, never lives completely in the present and the ideologies of the superego (or the superego as a "vehicle") perpetuate the past and the traditions of the race, which yield gradually to the influence of the presence and to new developments. In our crime and victimological analyses, personal growth and communal change can therefore not be separated, nor can an identity crisis in individual life be separated from contemporary crises within historical context. Both these crises define each other and are thus relative to one another. This highlights furthermore the importance of a synthesis, or mutuality between traditional and modern cultures to arrive at both a meaningful collective and individual identity.
Source: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 20, pp 1 –9 (2007)More Less
'Crime-related Fears within the Context of New Anxieties and Community-Based Crime Prevention' is the subtitle of the research project of which the following research results form a part of. Nevertheless, not fears and anxieties are discussed here, but the extent of satisfaction of people with their neighbourhood. The idea underlying this part of the research is that in addition to the negative aspects that are generally research objectives, the focus should also fall on positive aspects. The reason for this to prevent the negative and also to strengthen the positive sufficiently. Positive factors at district level were a familiar social climate, an inviting social climate, friendly people in the district and good relations with the neighbours. These positive variables were strong enough to compensate for several negative influences.
Author C. De WetSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 20, pp 10 –42 (2007)More Less
A reading of newspaper articles paints a grim picture of educators as perpetrators and victims of school violence in South Africa. Yet, the majority of studies on school violence in South Africa are learner-centred. Educator-centred violence may have far-reaching consequences to the professional, private and constitutional life and rights of educators and learners. This article will attempt to fill the aforementioned hiatus in the South African school violence literature by reporting on an investigation on the exposure of Free State educators to school violence. The research instrument was an adapted version of Joshi and Kaschak's (1998) violence and trauma questionnaire. This study provides ample narrative and statistical evidence that Free State educators are victims and perpetrators of school violence. These acts of violence are contrary to the code of an educator's professional relationships, namely educator-learner, collegial, educator-parent as well as educator-community relationships. Furthermore, it was found that females and younger educators were more often the victims of most types of school violence than their male and older colleagues. The qualitative data also revealed the underlying reasons for educator-centred violence, as well as the gendered nature of the violence. Recommendations based on the most important findings of the study, are included.
Restorative justice with an explicit rehabilitative ethos : is this the resolve to change criminality?Author C. BezuidenhoutSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 20, pp 43 –60 (2007)More Less
Despite ongoing research there is no consensus amongst scholars regarding the definition and meaning of restorative justice. While various ideas have been advanced on what restorative justice is supposed to be, the literature is unclear as to whether it should be a mainstream role-player in criminal justice. In this contribution it is envisaged that all the different arguments regarding restorative justice will be addressed to position it in relation to mainstream criminal justice and rehabilitation. It appears that the key objective of restorative justice is restoration and addressing harms after the victim has granted forgiveness. However, some victims will take a long time to forgive while others will never forgive. Some scholars believe that a restorative justice conference is much more effective in preventing further crime i.e. promotes (rehabilitation) than the formal threats of the Criminal Justice System. This contribution takes a critical look at restorative justice and whether we should be optimistic that this new trend will make a contribution towards resolving crime and whether it should replace existing punitive measures in the Criminal Justice System. Proper research findings are required to determine whether restorative justice could address the current limitations of the existing Criminal Justice System.
Author D.L. KgosimoreSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 20, pp 61 –82 (2007)More Less
Work-related violence against employees is a common occurrence in South Africa. However, the phenomenon of workplace violence remains largely under-researched. Without proper scientific knowledge of workplace violence, therefore, violence against employees cannot be properly controlled. An analysis of newspaper articles on violence that accompany labour strikes reveals that the 2006 labour strike by security guard members of the South Africa Transport and Allied Workers Union (SATAWU), replicated the form and nature of three previous strikes - also by members of SATAWU. Physical and nonphysical violence against non-striking workers was perpetrated with impunity. Employers and employees in other workplaces became victims of striking workers when the violence spilled over into their workplaces. Whereas the existing research on workplace violence indicates that non-physical or verbal violence is the most common type of workplace violence, the finding of the current research indicates more incidents of physical violence than non-physical ones. Again, whereas existing research results are based on work-related violence that is perpetrated on the grounds of the workplace, this research shows that issues that emanate from the workplace are also related to violence that is perpetrated against employees away from the workplace. As such, violence of this nature cannot be excluded from the broad spectrum of workplace violence.
Source: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 20, pp 83 –101 (2007)More Less
Rehabilitation is a process - not an event - to bring about change within the offender and to change anti-social attitudes and behaviour. The South African Department of Correctional Services is responsible for the offering and implementation of rehabilitation programmes to offenders imprisoned by the courts of law. The Department of Correctional Services is currently in the process of transformation, with the offender becoming the focal point through placing rehabilitation firmly at the centre of its activities. Rehabilitation is seen as a process, and not an event or programme, aimed at addressing the specific history of the offender's criminal behaviour. Education and training programmes are just some of the tools that are being used to activate the offender rehabilitation process. These initiatives are supported by social work as well as psychological and spiritual / religious counselling. To guide the Department in becoming an offender rehabilitation-centred institution, a cabinet-approved document, known as the White Paper on Corrections, was published. Certain objectives against which the Department should be measured are set out in this document. Although it is firmly believed that the guidelines in the White Paper on Corrections will pave the way to reduce recidivism, the South African criminal justice system does not have a scientific mechanism at its disposal to track offenders after their release from prison, nor to keep track of reoffending and resentencing. A further obstacle to the implementation of offender rehabilitation plans is the fact that South African prisons are seriously overcrowded. A statistical analysis shows that there is a major shortage in educational service delivery due to the fact that for 13 percent of all sentenced incarcerated offenders there is no opportunity to participate in educational programmes. This shortcoming is exacerbated by the shortage of specialised educational staff as well as social workers and psychologists within the Department of Correctional Services. This constraint is aggravated by the overcrowding problem. On the positive side it should be mentioned that, not only is there a satisfactory pass rate among offenders writing the educational examinations, but there is also an increase in the number of offenders participating in vocational training and occupational skills programmes. However, as long as the offender primarily regards rehabilitation programmes as an instrument to influence the parole board, rehabilitation will largely remain a myth.
Source: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 20, pp 102 –118 (2007)More Less
This article provides a profile on crime, poverty and related issues farm workers have to deal with in their community. A multidisciplinary study was done by the Faculty of Health Sciences of the North-West University (Potchefstroom Campus) on certain farms in the North-West Province of South Africa and is known as FLAGH, meaning the Farm Labour, Agriculture and General Health study. Thirty (N=30) respondents were identified through systematic random sampling techniques for this study. Qualitative interviews were conducted for data collection purposes. The aim of this article is to do an overview of available literature on the perceptions of farm worker's in an informal farming settlement concerning poverty and crime in support of the study.
Author T.S. PetrusSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 20, pp 119 –137 (2007)More Less
The occurrence of criminal activities that have been associated or classified as falling within the category of what can be called "ritual crime", has received widespread attention in the media in recent years. However, the nature of this kind of criminal activity makes it a difficult issue to deal with in a simplistic manner. In the media, ritual crimes are usually reported on for the sake of sensationalism, with reports mainly concerned with the occurrence of Satanism or Satanist-related activities. If, for example, a ritual murder has allegedly occurred, the media tend to report only the murder but rarely follow the criminal investigation undertaken by law enforcement officers to solve such a case. Police departments have gone as far as establishing law enforcement structures or units specifically for the purpose of dealing with ritual crime. Given the controversial nature of ritual crime, opinions on its existence are varied, ranging from scepticism, apparently as a result of a lack of verifiable evidence, to religious fundamentalist acceptance, which is based on religious beliefs and not on the verification of evidence. However, not enough is known about the ritual crime phenomenon to warrant any justification for preferring one point of view to another. In this paper, it is suggested that knowledge of anthropology could assist law enforcement officers and policy makers in obtaining a more informed perspective on the issue of ritual crime and how to deal with it. Within the context of globalisation, multiculturalism and religious pluralism, understanding the belief systems of local communities becomes crucial in both the investigation of ritual crimes and the creation of legislation to cope with it. This field of investigation could provide new areas to explore while also contributing towards anthropological research, which could be of possible benefit not only to law enforcement, but also community development.
Source: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 20, pp 138 –153 (2007)More Less
This article deals with the development of restorative justice in South Africa and cases appropriate to restorative justice in terms of international trends. An analysis of cases referred to restorative justice in the Tshwane Metropolitan Area is made and compared with international and national research findings. The research found that restorative justice in the Tshwane Metropolitan Area is currently mostly used at the pre-trial level for cases of assault and domestic violence where the victim and offender know each other in line with traditional African custom. There is furthermore considerable focus on the treatment and rehabilitation of offenders as part of the restorative agreement. Such treatment is aimed at reducing future violence which may arise as a result of the fact that the victim and offender know each other in about 75 percent of cases of interpersonal violence. The profile of victims and offenders are broadly in line with international findings in that most offenders are male while a large number of victims are female and the majority of victims and offenders are under the age of 35. A number of recommendations are also made based on the research findings.