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Book Forum: Child and Adolescent Psychiatry   |    
Antisocial Behavior in Children and Adolescents: A Developmental Analysis and Model for Intervention
ALAN E. KAZDIN, Ph.D.
Am J Psychiatry 2003;160:805-805. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.160.4.805
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Edited by John B. Reid, Ph.D., Gerald R. Patterson, Ph.D., and James J. Snyder, Ph.D. Washington, D.C., American Psychological Association, 2002, 339 pp., $49.95.

This book is the latest installment of an ongoing program of research on the development and treatment of antisocial behavior, a term that encompasses clinically referred conduct problems, delinquency, and substance use. For approximately 40 years, Patterson, Reid, and their colleagues have conducted research on family interaction and social processes that underlie antisocial behavior as well as on treatment and prevention. Two previous books charted advances in development of theory and research (1, 2). Like the previous work, this book consolidates and integrates a large stream of publications and findings.

The volume includes 14 chapters by 19 contributors working at or in collaboration with the Oregon Learning Center in Eugene, where the research has been ongoing. An introductory chapter traces the history of the research program and highlights theoretical, methodological, and substantive advances. The remaining chapters are organized into two sections: Development of Antisocial Behavior and Interventions for Antisocial Behavior. The chapters on the development of antisocial behavior begin with the early childhood development of coercive family behavior in the home. The conceptual models integrate the influence of parents’ discipline practices, peer relations, depression, stress, and many other factors over the course of development. Empirical tests of the models show how these factors influence and in many cases are influenced by child deviance. Interesting questions are addressed along the way, such as precisely how discipline practices exert influence on child deviance, how peers help "train" deviance, and the emergence of adolescent depression, to mention a few.

The treatment chapters cover several interventions, including parent training, treatment in the context of foster care, preventive interventions for conduct problems, and intervention with divorced families. The chapters encompass studies of key processes and how they operate as well as reports of randomized controlled trials.

This is an excellent book to convey the latest on research on antisocial behavior over the course of childhood, adolescence, and early adulthood. The body of work features science at its best. The research shows how basic epidemiologic and longitudinal studies are used to construct and test theory of a clinical problem; how multiple influences can be integrated, modeled, and tested; and how basic research can be translated into effective interventions. The book is rich in theory, research, and guidelines for intervention and exemplary in showing how these relate to each other.

Patterson GR: Coercive Family Process. Eugene, Ore, Castalia, 1982
 
Patterson GR, Reid JB, Dishion TJ: Antisocial Boys. Eugene, Ore, Castalia, 1992
 
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References

Patterson GR: Coercive Family Process. Eugene, Ore, Castalia, 1982
 
Patterson GR, Reid JB, Dishion TJ: Antisocial Boys. Eugene, Ore, Castalia, 1992
 
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