Construal Level Theory and Fear of Crime
In Chadee, D., (2015). Psychology of Fear, Crime and the Media. International Perspectives. Routledge, Forthcoming
17 Pages Posted: 7 Jan 2015 Last revised: 25 Feb 2015
Date Written: January 5, 2015
Construal level theory of psychological distance (CLT) is a social psychological theory that explores the mechanisms that people use to experience and express reactions to distal events, i.e., events that are not present in the ‘here and now’. The first mechanism is psychological distance from or proximity to the distal event in question; the second mechanism is mental construal of the distal event itself. In this chapter we consider the applicability of CLT for research into people’s representations of crime and their fear of crime. Our goals are twofold: (a) to stimulate new lines of enquiry in criminological research into fear of crime and (b) to discuss their theoretical and policy implications.
Keywords: fear of crime, psychological distance/proximity, crime construal, affect, risk perception
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