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An Introduction to Juvenile Justice

Child Savers to Cyber Bullies

Frank Merenda

Publication Date - 16 November 2021

ISBN: 9780190852832

400 pages
8 x 10 inches

In Stock

A cutting edge, comprehensive, real-world analysis of the Juvenile Justice system.


Although incarceration rates of juveniles in the United States have decreased over the past ten years, the U.S. still confines the highest number of youths compared to any other developed country in the world. Since the inception of the Juvenile Justice system, society's perception of children and how they should be treated within the Criminal Justice System has not only influenced the outcomes of our youths' future but is ever-changing. This changing and sometimes volatile system is scrutinized not only by our nation but the rest of the world. A primary goal of this text is to enable students to evaluate the system by providing not only a comprehensive look at its creation and development, but the intricacies within that have made it what it is today.

In addition to providing the mainstream topics, this text goes further than competitors in its unique approach and cutting-edge content that ranges from learning activities to sections on victim impact, theoretical and practical applications, provocative discussion questions, comprehensive wrap-ups, and relevant laws and landmark cases. Further, this text provides comprehensive coverage of the effects of the digital age on juveniles, specifically social media, sexting, cyberbullying, child pornography, and abduction. A separate chapter covers the effects of media violence on youths, including how television, movies, and modem virtual reality video games have advanced in both content and accessibility. At the end of each chapter, a world view of the topics covered offers comparative perspectives, an engaging and informative feature for students.


  • A student-friendly comprehensive overview of the Juvenile Justice System ranging from how and why it was formed to what it has become and current-day challenges.
  • Inclusion of contemporary laws and public opinions concerning high-interest topics such as solitary confinement, life in prison, formal detention, and disparities across age, race, gender socioeconomic status.
  • An entire chapter covering Digital Age issues facing today's youth that includes social media, cyber harassment, cyberbullying, sexting, child pornography, and abduction. This chapter also covers the interchangeable role of offender and victim in the digital age.
  • An in depth look at juvenile victims, specifically how they are treated by the system, the outreach that is done, their satisfaction, and their role at the many stages of the justice process.
  • Each section provides a comprehensive wrap-up, a timeline in early chapters to assist students in conceptualizing the material, and a world view section at the end of every chapter that allows students to have a broader perspective and glean comparative statistics and innovative ideas from across the globe.

About the Author(s)

Dr. Merenda is an associate professor in the Department of Criminal Justice at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, New York. He received his doctorate from St. John's University and his Master's of Public Administration from Harvard University, where he was awarded the 2012 Harvard University Presidential Fellowship for Public Service.

Dr. Merenda has worked with juveniles in a variety of capacities for over 25 years. Prior to entering academia, Professor Merenda worked for the New York City Police Department, performing various roles. Many of these positions enabled him to interact with or assess policy concerning juveniles. He retired as a police captain after completing 20 years of dedicated service.

Dr. Merenda has published several scholarly works examining intervention and diversionary strategies. He continues to be an advocate for juvenile justice reform and the adoption of community-based programs that aim to better serve today's youth.

He lives with his wife and family in New York.

Table of Contents


    Chapter 1: History of the Juvenile Justice System.

    Chapter 2: Juvenile Delinquency: Definitions, scope and crime measures.

    Chapter 3: Theories of Delinquency


    Chapter 4: The Juvenile Offender: A Small Adult?

    Chapter 5: Gangs and Juveniles

    Chapter 6: Juvenile Victims


    Chapter 7: The Police and Juveniles

    Chapter 8: Juvenile Courts

    Chapter 9: Juvenile Corrections

    Chapter 10: Interventions and Diversion


    Chapter 11: Media evolution, Effects on Juveniles, and Protections Put in Place

    Chapter 12: Juvenile Justice and the Digital Age

    Chapter 13: Juvenile Justice: Trends and Reforms

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