My Life in Crime

John Irwin, San Francisco State University

ABSTRACT
When I entered college in 1957 I had no intentions of studying sociology or criminology, nor of becoming a criminologist. It was not only my deviant past that caused me to be more interested in criminology, but my intense curiosity about the lives of people I encountered, particularly people who were different. here at the end of my career, reviewing my experiences in research and social activism, my accompliishments and disappointments, I have learned to cherish one professional virtue above all others: intellectural integrity. Our primary mission, I believe is to find the truth, which is not an easy task. We must hone the skills required to see the truth, including a variety of research skills. I have learned that, when it comes to human subjects, empathy, intuition, and appreciations are crucial, as well as a heightened capacity to see through sham, dogma, and illusion.

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Updated 05/20/2006