2006 年 78 巻 p. 129-146
The purpose of this study is to examine the feelings of “uneasiness” that have become the dominant image where we consider the issue of juvenile crime, and which became the driving force for the enactment of various ordinances. The material used for this examination is reports of the juvenile crimes in the pseudo-environment that mediates the holding of this image, that is, in the mass media. Concretely, the analysis and consideration were done based on reports on juvenile homicides in “Asahi Shimbun” in the postwar period. As a result, the following tendencies in recent years have been extracted as a symptom that people have come to feel uneasiness.
1) The number of juveniles arrested on charges of homicide in recent years is low compared with the peak in the 1950s and 1960s. However, newspaper reports on homicides have become much more numerous since 1997. This made people widely aware of crimes by “ordinary children, ” and it appears that this is related to the uneasiness people feel that they or their children might be victims of juvenile crime or that their child might become an assailant.
2) In recent years, the malicious nature and cruelty of assailants is often reported along with the tendency to focus on “psychological problems”(kokoro no yami) in the articles. As a result, assailants and their parents and teachers have been subjected to criticism that did not exist in the past.
3) From the same focus on “psychology, ” references to “child-rearing” and “educational methods” have been made from a professional viewpoint by specialists in psychology. As a result, everyday life, which was once selfevident, has come under questioning. Moreover, the usage of psychological terms in recent years has been used not only to label assailants as abnormal, but also to make parents and teachers reflexively think, “Is your child OK?” It was thought that the rise of uneasiness is related to these psychological references that destroy the self-evidence of everyday life of parents and teachers.