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Lecture 2

SOCI-225 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Fidel Castro, Victimless Crime, Sharia

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Crime and Deviance as a continuum: Hagan proposed a definition of crime that encompasses both
criminal law and a range of behaviours that should be crimes (ie white collar). Actually liable and
potetially liale defiitio
1)degree of consensus that an act is wrongmost feel mass murder is wrong, while less agreement
over marijuana
2)the severity of societal reaction: ie possession of marijuana versus murder
3degree of har of the at is assessed: drug use, prostitutio, ad other itiless ries that
only harm the offender
-separation of deviance and crime: ie not providing a safe work environment would be disapproved
of y soiety ut is’t eessarily illegal
4 categories (Hagan): consensus crimes (high agreement), conflict crimes (low agreement), social
deviation and social diversion (relatively harmless usually met with apathy)
-crime is socially defined: ie murder is a crime, but not when one is at war. Defined by deviance: ie
i Hollad, dotor assisted suiide is alloed, here it is deiat
-there is nothing inherent about an act that makes it unlawful (ie those who fight an unfair political
system via terroism; ie Fidel Castro who took power via violence is a celebrated hero)
-at one point gay activity was illegalended by Trudeau who said the state has o plae i the
Conflict versus consensus theories:
-consensus theories: law represents the agreement of most people in society that certain acts
should be criminal
-law is a codification of values (collective ideas about right and wrong in a culture)ie
sharia law legal in Muslim countries, but not here. Often laws can be based in a certain religion or
religious text
-supported by broad agreement regarding many crimes such as murder
-conflict approach: laws are passed by the ruling class to maintain their position and control the
-non consensus: ie the Indian act used to control the population and confined them to
-conservative government planned to impose jail time for trafficking marijuana; vs nicotine
which is legally aailale? I early 9’s harsh drug las ere passed—Cacasians more likely to
use heroin, while the Asian arrivals used opiumracial hostility against this group that was low in
status aimed to target them
-drugs laws still impact the socially disadvantaged more than the elites
New fields of criminology: Green criminology and Terrorism studies
-green criminology: environmental destruction and other environmental social harms
-ie water pollution that resulted in death or illness is prosecuted, when test results were
-other concerns such as oil sands emissions need to be addressed
-resource issues such as clearcutting, global warming and mass famines
-animals and animal rights: must prove willful neglect, but many disagree with this. Bill with
stricter laws and provisions removing the willful clause failed to pass in 2008 due to pressure from
industries such as fishing and sports
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