Dangerousness

Nicola Gray, John Gunn, David james, John Monahan, Robert Snowden, Pamela J Taylor, Julian Walker, Lisa Jane Warren

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Otherpeer-review

Abstract

The title of this chapter has given us pause. The government
commissioned report which laid the foundations
for modern forensic psychiatry in the UK [(Home Office,
Department of Health and social security (Butler), 1975]
used the term ‘dangerousness’, but it is now rarely used
in clinical practice. After a man was convicted of high
profile homicides which had occurred shortly after his
departure from a hospital, a later government intervention
in England and Wales brought the concept of ‘Dangerous
and Severe Personality Disorder’ into being (Home Office,
1999), although this terminology has since been confined
to history (see chapter 16). The conjunction of words was
generally not welcomed by clinicians, and may have been a
factor in the UK in consolidating a preference for use of the
term ‘risk’, generally here shorthand for a concept of risk
of a seriously adverse event. ‘Risk’ is sometimes, though, a
term used so unthinkingly by clinicians that the question
‘risk of what?’ invokes puzzlement, so we have retained the
title word of dangerousness to emphasize that our concern
here is with risk of serious harm to others.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationForensic Psychiatry: Clinical, legal and ethical issues
EditorsJohn Gunn, Pamela Taylor
Place of PublicationBoca Raton, FL
PublisherCRC Press
Chapter22
Pages529-551
Number of pages22
Edition2
ISBN (Electronic)9781444165067
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Keywords

  • Violence risk

Cite this

Gray, N., Gunn, J., james, D., Monahan, J., Snowden, R., Taylor, P. J., ... Warren, L. J. (2014). Dangerousness. In J. Gunn, & P. Taylor (Eds.), Forensic Psychiatry: Clinical, legal and ethical issues (2 ed., pp. 529-551). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.
Gray, Nicola ; Gunn, John ; james, David ; Monahan, John ; Snowden, Robert ; Taylor, Pamela J ; Walker, Julian ; Warren, Lisa Jane. / Dangerousness. Forensic Psychiatry: Clinical, legal and ethical issues. editor / John Gunn ; Pamela Taylor. 2. ed. Boca Raton, FL : CRC Press, 2014. pp. 529-551
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Gray, N, Gunn, J, james, D, Monahan, J, Snowden, R, Taylor, PJ, Walker, J & Warren, LJ 2014, Dangerousness. in J Gunn & P Taylor (eds), Forensic Psychiatry: Clinical, legal and ethical issues. 2 edn, CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, pp. 529-551.

Dangerousness. / Gray, Nicola; Gunn, John; james, David; Monahan, John ; Snowden, Robert ; Taylor, Pamela J; Walker, Julian ; Warren, Lisa Jane.

Forensic Psychiatry: Clinical, legal and ethical issues. ed. / John Gunn; Pamela Taylor. 2. ed. Boca Raton, FL : CRC Press, 2014. p. 529-551.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Otherpeer-review

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AU - james, David

AU - Monahan, John

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AU - Walker, Julian

AU - Warren, Lisa Jane

PY - 2014

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N2 - The title of this chapter has given us pause. The governmentcommissioned report which laid the foundationsfor modern forensic psychiatry in the UK [(Home Office,Department of Health and social security (Butler), 1975]used the term ‘dangerousness’, but it is now rarely usedin clinical practice. After a man was convicted of highprofile homicides which had occurred shortly after hisdeparture from a hospital, a later government interventionin England and Wales brought the concept of ‘Dangerousand Severe Personality Disorder’ into being (Home Office,1999), although this terminology has since been confinedto history (see chapter 16). The conjunction of words wasgenerally not welcomed by clinicians, and may have been afactor in the UK in consolidating a preference for use of theterm ‘risk’, generally here shorthand for a concept of riskof a seriously adverse event. ‘Risk’ is sometimes, though, aterm used so unthinkingly by clinicians that the question‘risk of what?’ invokes puzzlement, so we have retained thetitle word of dangerousness to emphasize that our concernhere is with risk of serious harm to others.

AB - The title of this chapter has given us pause. The governmentcommissioned report which laid the foundationsfor modern forensic psychiatry in the UK [(Home Office,Department of Health and social security (Butler), 1975]used the term ‘dangerousness’, but it is now rarely usedin clinical practice. After a man was convicted of highprofile homicides which had occurred shortly after hisdeparture from a hospital, a later government interventionin England and Wales brought the concept of ‘Dangerousand Severe Personality Disorder’ into being (Home Office,1999), although this terminology has since been confinedto history (see chapter 16). The conjunction of words wasgenerally not welcomed by clinicians, and may have been afactor in the UK in consolidating a preference for use of theterm ‘risk’, generally here shorthand for a concept of riskof a seriously adverse event. ‘Risk’ is sometimes, though, aterm used so unthinkingly by clinicians that the question‘risk of what?’ invokes puzzlement, so we have retained thetitle word of dangerousness to emphasize that our concernhere is with risk of serious harm to others.

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Gray N, Gunn J, james D, Monahan J, Snowden R, Taylor PJ et al. Dangerousness. In Gunn J, Taylor P, editors, Forensic Psychiatry: Clinical, legal and ethical issues. 2 ed. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. 2014. p. 529-551