Criminal Narratives of Mentally Disordered Offenders: An Exploratory Study

Elizabeth Spruin, David Canter, Donna Youngs, Belinda Coulston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


The study explored the personal narratives of Mentally Disordered Offenders (MDOs) and the impact various mental disorders had on the structure of the offenders’ criminal narratives. Seventy adult male offenders who were sectioned under the United Kingdom’s Mental Health Act 2007 were recruited for the study. Participants were provided with a 36 item Criminal Narrative Role Questionnaire. Smallest Space Analysis found four criminal narrative themes (Victim, Revenger, Hero, Professional), which indicated clear distinctions in the narrative experience of MDOs. The major differences were found to be related to the vulnerability of the offender’s mental disorder.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)438-455
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Forensic Psychology Practice
Issue number5
Early online date5 Nov 2014
Publication statusPublished - 5 Nov 2014


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