The victim-offender as the epitome of the nonideal victim

University essay from Malmö universitet/Fakulteten för hälsa och samhälle (HS)

Abstract: The victim-offender overlap has been extensively studied and documented overthe last decades. Various studies have identified young men as the most commonvictims of violent assault, yet the public, the media, but also criminologicalresearch have actively favored the discourse on the ideal victim. Consequently,not much is known about how victim-offenders experience and perceivevictimization.The present systematic literature review aims to analyze how violent victimizationis experienced and narrated by male victim-offenders in the context of hegemonicmasculinity. Secondly, it aims to analyze in how far the public’s attitudes ofvictim blaming and victim concern are affected by a belief in a just world.Collectively, these findings aim to create a better understanding of criminal men’svictim identities.The public’s empathy and concern are reserved to the innocent and vulnerablevictim; criminal men are perceived as culpable and deserving of victimization.The latter use violence as an instrument of dominance and subordination, in linewith hegemonic masculinity beliefs, and reject the victim identity (antithesis ofmasculinity), forming a new category of the nonideal victim.

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