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Youth transitions: from offending to desistance

Barry, Monica (2010) Youth transitions: from offending to desistance. Journal of Youth Studies, 13 (1). pp. 121-136. ISSN 1367-6261

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This article examines youth transitions and youth offending in tandem. It argues that the transition to adulthood is heavily implicated in the fact that most offending occurs in the youth phase. Drawing on a study of 20 male and 20 female persistent young offenders in Scotland, it explores young people's desire for integration with others in the transition phases - with their families in childhood, with their friends in youth and with the wider society in adulthood. During the youth phase, much of that integration comes from offending itself, whereas when more legitimate opportunities and sources of recognition are offered to them in early adulthood, desistance is more likely to occur.