Victimization, fear of crime, procedural injustice and inmate misconduct: an application of general strain theory in South Korea




Choi, Jaeyong

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Purpose: While a wealth of research on Agnew’s general strain theory has shown that strains can promote the likelihood of crime and deviant behavior, the application of general strain theory towards a prison setting remains understudied. This study aims to expand the knowledge base for our understanding of the roles that unique strains play within prisons that may pressure inmates to engage in inmate misconduct.

Methods: Drawing on data from a sample of South Korean inmates, the present paper examines the impact of prison-based strains on violent and nonviolent misconduct.

Results: Findings suggest that experienced strain (i.e., violent criminal victimization), anticipated strain (i.e., fear of crime), and perceived procedural injustice adversely affected inmate misconduct; however, the magnitude of the effects varied across different types of inmate misconduct.

Conclusions: Prevention/intervention efforts to diminish strains that inmates encounter in institutional corrections are necessary to decrease inmate misconduct.



strain, general strain theory, inmate misconduct, prison violence


Choi J. (2019). Victimization, fear of crime, procedural injustice and inmate misconduct: An application of general strain theory. International Journal of Law, Crime, and Justice, 59.