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  Previous issue (2022. Vol. 12, no. 1)


Psychology and Law

Publisher: Moscow State University of Psychology and Education

ISSN (online): 2222-5196


License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published since 2011

Published quarterly

Free of fees
Open Access Journal


Graffiti: subculture or vandalism 2300


Kurbatova T.N.
associate professor, Saint Petersburg State University , St.Petersburg, Russia

Vasilyeva R.S.
Moscow, Russia

The article discusses the phenomenon of the modern graffiti in terms of subculture and vandalism. We denote the boundary between the concepts of vandalism in cultural and legal discourse. Study of scientific sources and method of participant observation allowed us to offer our own definition of graffiti. Particular attention is paid to the psychological portrait of the graffiti painters on the basis of empirical data obtained for the first time in our country. The study compared groups of young people involved in graffiti and in legal fine arts. The study revealed the psychological characteristics of graffiti painters and identified the main factors that keep young people in the subculture. Graffiti subculture itself is not considered as a criminal community, but as a communicative field within which young people decide their age-specific problems. Accordingly, we proposed penalties for graffiti painters considering their psychological characteristics.

Keywords: vandalism, graffiti, deviant behavior, youth, psychological characteristics, subculture.

Column: Psychology of Deviant and Criminal Behavior

For Reference

  1. Barsamov S. A. Subkul'tura graffiti: social'naja organizacija i perspektivy integracii // Teorija i praktika obshhestvennogo razvitija. 2011. № 7. S. 68–70.
  2. Belkin A. I. Social'no-psihologicheskij analiz graffiti (Na materiale neinstitucional'nyh nadpisej i risunkov uchebnyh zavedenij g. Samary) // Diss. … kand. pshol. nauk. Samara, 2003.
  3. Bol'shoj tolkovyj slovar' po kul'turologii // Kononenko B. I. M: Veche God: 2003. 512 S.
  4. Vil'kovskij M. B. Sociologija arhitektury. M.: Fond «Russkij avangard», 2010. 592 s.
  5. Celujko A. Graffiti: formy bytovanija i specifika jeksponirovanija // Hudozhestvennyj zhurnal. Moscow Art Magazine. 2007. № 64.
  6. Delitz H. Architektur als Medium des Sozialen. Ein Vorschlag zur Neubegriindung der Architektursoziologie // Sociologia Internationalis. 2006. № 1.

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