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Access Type

WSU Access

Date of Award

January 2018

Degree Type


Degree Name



Criminal Justice

First Advisor

Harold Geistman


Stalking is a stressful event that may trigger a set of negative emotional states in the victim, so to avoid committing deviant/criminal behavior as a reaction to being stalked, the victims need to properly cope with such experiences. GST explicitly explains the role of emotional reactions in crime and delinquency as well as legal and illegal coping with strains and negative emotions. Therefore, this theory would be a suitable framework to understand stalking behavior and stalking victimization. This study examined stalking victimization within the frame of the General Strain Theory. Two hypotheses were investigated in this study. First, the nature of the stalking strain and negative affect impacts stalking victimization differently for males and females. Second, males and females use coping mechanisms to deal with stalking differently. Findings revealed that GST provided a good overall explanation for stalking victimization. Stalking is an example of negative/noxious stimuli strain that leads to multiple experiences of negative affect, which requires the victim to employ coping skills in order to deal with it. However, the results have partially supported the hypotheses. While no correlation was found between cognitive legal coping methods and behavioral illegal coping methods variables and gender, there was a significant relationship between behavioral legal coping methods and gender.

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