n Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology - Victimology, victim assistance and criminal justice : perspectives shared by international experts at the Inter University Centre of Dubrovnik, Otmar Hagemann, Peter Schafer and Stephanie Schmidt (Eds.) : book reviews

Volume 23, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1012-8093



This book presents a lively mix that focuses - from many angles - on victimology. It reflects the broad scope of approaches to a field that has been formed essentially through systematic work in Dubrovnik. For the past 25 years, the course in Dubrovnik has been a steady reliable center of victimological teaching and thinking. It became the galleon's figure for other regular postgraduate courses in Africa (Monash South Africa, Johannesburg) and in Asia (Tokiwa, Mito, Japan), not to forget similar courses in Salvador and Columbia. It is impossible to develop a curriculum for victimology out of all the precious contributions to this book. It is equally difficult to decide which of the contributions in this book will survive. Surviving means to be quoted by other victimologists. Surviving means finding entrance into the curriculum of victimology. One thing is certain, however : the commitment of victimologists to scientific analysis of victims, victimizations and the reaction towards both is clearer than ever. Unscientific reports from the field for the field do not have any chance of survival. It seems to be clear too that new verbal contributions (such as the term "victimhood") are neither necessary nor clarifying. A strong rootedness of the contributions in the existing traditions of victimology and in the contributing sciences is needed. Only if we know and state on whose shoulders we stand, will we be able to further develop victimology. Solo ballet exercises will not do it.

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