Former Criminal Justice Master’s student, Michael Melendez, and Professors Dr. Bronwen Lichtenstein and Dr. Matthew Dolliver have co-authored an article titled “Mothers of Mass Shooters: Exploring Public Blame for the Mothers of School Shooters through an Application of the Courtesy Stigma to the Columbine and Newtown Tragedies.” Following mass shootings such as those at Columbine High School and Newtown Elemenetary there’s typically an intense public search for blame. Blame tends to fall to shooters families and to mothers in particular. Melendez, Lichtenstein, and Dolliver apply Goffman’s concept of courtesy (associated) stigma to analyze readers’ responses and the blame assignment those responses reflected on CBS and The Huffington Post weblogs. Their research determined that courtesy stigma and gender rules are closing related in the framing these responses.
Their research appears in the current issue of the journal Deviant Behavior and can be viewed online at the following link: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/01639625.2015.1060754