Religious and Spiritual Desistance From Gangs

  • Ross Deuchar


In this chapter, I explore the evidence that suggests that religious and/or spiritual engagement can support masculinity identity reconstruction among offenders in such a way as to stimulate the desistance process. The process of faith conversion and the emergence of redemption scripts (Maruna in Making good: How ex-convicts reform and rebuild their lives. American Psychological Association, Washington DC, 2001) is critically analysed, and I consider the potential salience of the way in which faith-based contexts may enhance some men’s ability to publically project stories of change about their values, attitudes and priorities. I also examine the existing insights that suggest that engagement in wider, more holistic spiritual practices may also play a role in the type of identity and behaviour change that stimulates progression towards desistance.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Interdisciplinary Research Unit on Crime, Policing and Social Justice, School of EducationUniversity of the West of ScotlandAyrUK

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