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Lecture 6

SOC*1500 - Week 6 - Social Structure .docx

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University of Guelph
SOC 1500
Mavis Morton

SOC*1500 October 11 2011 Week 6 – Social Structure – Tuesday Lecture Media Violence and Violent Behaviour - Savage, Joanne. 2008 “The Role of Exposure to Media Violence in the Etiology of Violent Behaviour: A Criminologist Weighs In - Effects of media violence on highly aggressive behaviour has either not been established or is very small - Types of media that has the greatest effect is realistic violence – news, sports etc SOC*1500 th October 13 2011 Week 6 – Social Structure – Thursday Lecture Regent Park “Revitalization or Gentrification” Jane/Finch Neighbourhood TO - Shortage of settlement, language, employment services, public transportation, schools overcrowded, no community centres. Racial tensions grew with complex mosaic of immigrants (White, Haines, Eisler, 2004:70) Merton’s Theory of Anomie - Main predictor of crime is low socioeconomic status Environmental Criminological Theory - Defensible Space – Oscar Newman - Better designed projects within low and middle-income housing can lower crime rates - Increased levels of surveillance and space that discourages criminal activity - E.G? Community gardens, individual planters on doorsteps, Critique of Merton’s Theory - Assumes everyone is committed to materialistic goals and ignores diversity of cultural values - Doesn’t tackle issues relating to the inequalities of the capitalist system - Doesn’t explain, “stealing for the hell of it!” o Crimes that are motivated beyond the economic and interest in trying to attain a certain level of material success - Dwells on lower-class crime and note on elite - Doesn’t address violent crime - Doesn’t explain low rates of female crimeStatus Frustration (sub-cultural theory) - Albert Cohen (1955) {a student of Merton’s} o Modified Merton’s theory of anomie to explain higher rates of delinquency among lower-class youth o Lower class lack access to legitimate means to attain social status based on middle class value system and consequently engage in delinquency Middle Class Measuring Rod - Albert Cohen (1955) o Authority figures (education) set standards based on middle class measuring rods – frustration/shame faced by youth who fail to meet standards and they react with delinquency o Gang as a subculture with oppositional value system – turn middle class norms upside down and are able to achieve alternative source of status Education Act – Ontario - In 2005 legislation “requires students to keep learning in a classroom or workplace training program, including apprenticeship, until the age of 18 or until they graduate” Graduation Rate Ontario - In 2003, the graduation rate was 68%. Thirty-four percent of high school dropouts will require income assistance at some point in their lifetime, compared to 7% of those who graduate. - In 2009, (6 years into implementation of the Student Success/Learning to 18 Strategy), 81% of students graduated from high school. Differential Opportunities - Richard Cloward and
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