Sociology 214 1
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Core issues in study of deviance
The behaviour of people called deviant
o Who is doing what?
The rules and standards that define deviance
o Who makes the rules/why?
o What is the effect?
Methodology in researching/studying deviance
o What methods are used to accomplish this?
Why study deviance/control issues?
- Vicarious experience
- Reforming impulse
- Self-protection and sophistication
- Understanding oneself and others
- Intellectual curiosity
- Each plays a role in how we approach the study of deviance and control
Historic explanations of deviance issues and control
Demonic perspectives (450-1100AD)
- Deviance is deemed to be caused by forces in the supernatural realm
- Justice was swift and severe, not formal
- The ‘deviant’ was the vehicle in which the demon or devil worked
- Social control of ‘demonic deviants’ was harsh and cruel
- Non-scientific ideologies
Classical perspective of deviance/control [17-1800s]
- The enlightenment brought a shift in ideologies on the view of ‘deviance’
- Church lost its hold, deviants were no longer possessed
- A deviant became one whose self-interest was not constrained by his/her expectation of
cost = hedonism
o Hedonism: the doctrine that pleasure or happiness is the highest good.
- View of deviance was that behaviour was a ‘rational calculation’ – based on the idea of
- More humane punishment
- Renaissance/ period of enlightenment = rational explanation to crime and punishment Sociology 214 2
Jan 9th 2012
- Concept of utilitarianism = premised on idea that punishment is useful, rational, and
Cesare Beccaria [1738-1794]
Most influential scholar in the evolution of justice and for