Introduction Biological theories within the field of criminology attempt to explain behaviors contrary to societal expectations through examination of individual characteristics. These theories are categorized within a paradigm called positivism also known as determinismwhich asserts that behaviors, including law-violating behaviors, are determined by factors largely beyond individual control. Positivist theories contrast with classical theories, which argue that people generally choose their behaviors in rational processes of logical decision making, and with critical theories, which critique lawmaking, social stratification, and the unequal distribution of power and wealth.
In other words, they continue to be good, law-abiding citizens. Faced with strain, some poor people continue to value economic success but come up with new means of achieving it.
They rob people or banks, commit fraud, or use other illegal means of acquiring money or property. Merton calls this adaptation innovation.
Other poor people continue to work at a job without much hope of greatly improving their lot in life. They go to work day after day as a habit. Merton calls this third adaptation ritualism. This adaptation does not involve deviant behavior but is a logical response to the strain poor people experience.
Their response to the strain they feel is to reject both the goal of economic success and the means of working. Here poor people not only reject the goal of success and the means of working but work actively to bring about a new society with a new value system.
These people are the radicals and revolutionaries of their time.
Because Merton developed his strain theory in the aftermath of the Great Depression, in which the labor and socialist movements had been quite active, it is not surprising that he thought of rebellion as a logical adaptation of the poor to their lack of economic success.
Perhaps most important, it overlooks deviance such as fraud by the middle and upper classes and also fails to explain murder, rape, and other crimes that usually are not done for economic reasons. It also does not explain why some poor people choose one adaptation over another.
Whereas Merton stressed that the poor have differential access to legitimate means workingCloward and Ohlin stressed that they have differential access to illegitimate means. For example, some live in neighborhoods where organized crime is dominant and will get involved in such crime; others live in neighborhoods rampant with drug use and will start using drugs themselves.
In a more recent formulation, two sociologists, Steven F. A romantic relationship may end, a family member may die, or students may be taunted or bullied at school.
Repeated strain-inducing incidents such as these produce anger, frustration, and other negative emotions, and these emotions in turn prompt delinquency and drug use.
Deviant Subcultures Some sociologists stress that poverty and other community conditions give rise to certain subcultures through which adolescents acquire values that promote deviant behavior. One of the first to make this point was Albert K.
Cohenwhose status frustration theory says that lower-class boys do poorly in school because schools emphasize middle-class values.Smart argued that previous theories of crime and deviance have ignored women. In particular they have ignored women's treatment by the criminal justice system and crimes committed by men against women.
Crime and Deviance from a Sociological and Psychological assessment: The sociology of deviance is the sociological study of deviant behavior, or the recognized violation of cultural norms.
Cultural Norms are society's propensity towards certain ideals; their aversion from .
Sociological Theories of Crime and Delinquency DAVID ZEMBROSKI comprehensive explanation of crime. Differential association explained why society.
Deviance was the result of socialization and learning values of a.
Sociological Theories of Crime and Delinquency subculture that supports attitudes and behaviors that the mainstream culture. What do sociologists mean by social control and when do social controls influence behavior?
Social control is the means by which members of a society attempt to . Key: crime/deviance cannot be explained by way of biological or psychological factors! sociological explanation, because it locates crime in, and identifies it as .
Assess subcultural explanation of crime and deviance Subcultural theories are used as an attempt to understand the cause of crime and deviance, they state that people who commit crime share different values from the mass law abiding members of society.