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James Kimmel Jr, JD

Lecturer in Psychiatry


James Kimmel, Jr., J.D., is a psychiatry lecturer, revenge and violence researcher, lawyer, social theorist, and novelist who focuses on the intersections of law, neuroscience, psychology, spirituality, violence, and addiction. He received his doctorate in jurisprudence from the University of Pennsylvania and his B.S. degree summa cum laude from the Schreyer Honors College of the Pennsylvania State University. He is the founder and a Co-Director of the Yale Collaborative for Motive Control Studies; developer of the Behavioral Addiction Model of Grievance, Revenge, and Violence; the Public Health Motive Control Approach to Preventing and Treating Violence; the nonjustice construct of grievance resolution and violence prevention; and the Nonjustice System and related Miracle Court App virtual courthouse for healing from victimization, controlling revenge cravings, and preventing and treating violence. He is a leader in expanding local, state, and national gun violence threat risk and reduction initiatives to include public behavioral health motive control strategies -- new approaches for reducing the desire to abuse guns by controlling the revenge cravings that arise out of grievances and perceived victimization. He developed the Revenge Attack Warning Signs and First Aid and the School Nonjustice System bullying prevention and victim support program in schools. He created, the first-of-it’s-kind website aimed at preventing murders and mass shootings by speaking directly to prospective killers. He co-founded and directed an evidence-based forensic peer support program in Pennsylvania utilizing, in part, the Nonjustice System for criminal justice-involved individuals with serious mental illnesses in jails and prisons. He is the author of Suing for Peace: A Guide for Resolving Life's Conflicts (Hampton Roads, 2005), The Trial of Fallen Angels, a novel (Penguin Random House/Putnam, 2012) and The Science of Revenge, forthcoming from Penguin Random House/Harmony. He was featured in the motion picture documentary 365 Days: A Year in the Life of Happy Valley (2014) about the Penn State University Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal. He was also featured in the book Schadenfreude: The Joy of Another’s Misfortune by Tiffany Watt Smith (Little Brown, 2018).

Education & Training

  • JD
    University of Pennsylvania (1990)

Departments & Organizations