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SOC 101 (300)

Crime, Law and Religion

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SOC 101
Barry Mc Clinchey

1 Chapter 14 DevianceandCrime - Who goes to jail? - US is the world’s leading jailer -- Canada is 5th In Canada, - Aboriginal offenders are more than twice as likely to be incarcerated than non-Aboriginal offenders - Aboriginal accused are more likely to be denied bail - More time is spent in pre-trial detention by Aboriginal people - Aboriginal accused are more likely to be charged with multiple offenses - Aboriginal people are more likely not to have legal representation at court proceedings - The over representation of Aboriginal persons in the federal prison population is worsening - Aboriginal persons accounted for 11% of the admissions to federal penitentiaries in 1991-92 - 15% in 1996-97 - 17% in 1997-98 - (Aboriginal people only represent 2% of adult Canadians) - ~what is behind the patterns that we see? - In Manitoba, where Aboriginal persons comprise 9% of the adult population, - they accounted for 61% of sentenced admissions to federal or provincial custody in 1997-98 - up from 55% in 1995-96 - This compares to 72% in Saskatchewan (which has a similar demographic) - 39% in Alberta - 16% in BC - under 10% in other provinces What is Criminology? ~~The body of knowledge regarding crime as a social phenomenon. It includes the process of making laws, breaking laws, and reacting towards the breaking of laws~~ -Crime:Designates certain behaviours and actions that require social control and social intervention, codified in law - Deviance-Actions that violate social norms, and that may or may not be against the law **Most crimes are understood as deviant however all deviant acts are not criminal Changes Over Time - Female body modification - Tattoos, Piercings, Smoking - Proliferation of plastic surgery What is Deviant? - What are the accepted standards? - changing over time - Where is the line? - ~tolerated vs not tolerated - Sexually explicit material vs. pornography? 2 - Prostitution? Social Deviance - Any acts that involve the violation of social norms - HowardBecker(1966) - Not the act itself that is deviant, rather people’s reaction to the act that makes it deviant - ~up to us to decided if something is deviant or not. - Whodecidesdeviance? - ~laws come about because of lobby groups - ~prohibition -- alcohol illegal because of a very powerful lobby group - COMPLEX- lots of sources ObjectiveDeviance - ways of thinking, acting and being - things people actually do - SubjectiveDeviance - moral status Theories on Crime Causation - A framework for understanding criminal behaviour that can then be tested - Provide us with an indication of how we can prevent or correct crimes - Translated into policy History of Explanations for Crime and Criminals - evil spirits, demons and magic thought to be responsible for criminal activities Classical Criminology - Rational Choice Theory - Movement to balance crime fairly - ~If we create painful punishments that are worse than the rewards from doing the deviant act, they rationally choose to not do it - Beccaria and Bentham - If crime results in some form of pleasure for the criminal, then pain must be used to prevent crime - ~set out severe punishments 4 Beliefs of Classical Crime - a) People have freewill - b) Lessworkforagreaterpayoff - Easier to rob a bank and get lots of money than work for months and pay taxes - c) The fearofpunishment
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