Cognitive Traits of Criminal Motivation

Jianqing LIU


The cognitive trait of criminal motivation is a characteristic of cognitive function of the criminal in the process of forming the criminal motivation and being governed by it, which is an organic component of the structure of criminal motivation. The research on the cognitive trait of criminal motivation involves three aspects, namely, cognitive factors, mechanisms and components. Fundamental factors of the cognitive dimension for the structure of criminal motivation involve expectations and value cognition, cognitive dissonance, attribution preference, subconscious level of implicit cognition, ability and control, etc. They are embodied in the target value of crime, rationalization of crime, self-efficiency of the criminal, criminal thinking patterns and other specific cognitive components by an active processing way realized by the criminal and an unconsciously automatic processing way.


Criminal motivation; Thinking patterns; Rationalization; Self-efficiency

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