What Is Interactional Theory?

Interactional theory asserts that different factors during childhood, adolescence and adulthood compel a person into delinquency. Interactional theory was put forward by Terence P. Thornberry in 1987.

According to interactional theory, delinquency during childhood is primarily governed by poverty and family disorganization. Most children get attracted to crime in schools during adolescence as a result of peer pressure.

The theory also suggests that children who resort to delinquency in later stages of adolescence and adulthood have poor academic interest and below-average intelligence.These children had supportive environments at school and reasonably good family, thereby delaying delinquent tendencies until they were older. People who resort to delinquency in adulthood are compelled by the social status of their family in conventional society.