Conduct Disorders and Severe Antisocial Behavior
As reflected in the title, the purpose of this book is to guide clinicians in understanding and treating youth with severe antisocial behavior. Children and adolescents with conduct disorders operate at quite a high cost to society. In many opinion polls, juvenile crime and violence is rated as one of the most pressing concerns for many in our society. This widespread concern has prompted professionals from many disciplines to search for more effective interventions to prevent and treat youth with such disorders. This book is my attempt to summarize the current status of this very important endeavor. In providing this guide to clinicians, I have attempted to emphasize the critical link between understanding the clinical presentation, course, and causes of conduct disorders and designing effective interventions for children and adolescents with these disorders. Many past books, book chapters, and review articles have emphasized one or the other of these objectives. Some have provided excellent summaries of the vast amount of research on youth with conduct disorders without explicitly and clearly describing the clinical applica tions of this research. Others have focused on the implementation of specific interventions for youth with conduct disorders that is divorced from a basic understanding of the many diverse and clinically important characteristics of this population. The overriding theme of this book is that successful clinical inter vention requires an integration of both bodies of knowledge.