Youth Crime: Sumer and Later

  • Marvin E. Wolfgang


We all know that crime is predominantly a male, youth problem, particularly between the ages of 15 and 24. Every historical period, every culture experiences the same age period of crime proclivity. To help us realize more than we generally do that the unrest of youth and the disparities between generations are not new phenomena, I am happy to quote from a tablet written in Sumer around 2000 B.C. Professor Samuel Kramer, the renowned Sumerian scholar from the University of Pennsylvania, translated this tablet and called it the first recorded case of delinquency in Western civilization. His successor, Professor Ake Sjöberg, has graciously translated additional lines of this tablet expressly for my use here.


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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2002

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  • Marvin E. Wolfgang

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