Intro to crim
January 13 2016
• What are norms?
Cultural expectations for how to behave in certain situations
o What we deem to be excepted in out society
▪ Explicit -> ie when you go on a bus and see that certain seats are
reserved for the elderly, you will not go to jail but it is an
• Will not call the cops but it is expected by society
• norms that are not written down, but we all know them
• ie shaking someone’s hand when you meet them or
coughing in your sleeve
▪ Why do we have them?
Helps us with expectations and predictions
• Social control
• What is deviance?
▪ Formal deviance and formal social control
• It would be a crime
• If you commit social deviance you will be formally punished
Ie jail time, ticket, probation, conditional sanction
▪ Informal deviance and informal social control
• People violating norms, but these norms have not been
notified into laws
• If this happens then people often become ridiculed,
examples on informal acts of deviance
o talking back to authority
o goth subculture
o inappropriate dressing ie Hawaiian shirt at funeral
o talking to yourself in public
• are tattoos deviant?
It depends who you ask
o Older would consider deviant, younger would not
think of deviant
▪ Are all criminal acts deviant?
• J-walking is illegal but not looked down upon
Under aged drinking
• Malum in se
o An act that is universally seen by society as deviant and harmful to the
greater good of society
▪ Ie homicide, terrorism
▪ • Malum prohibiutm
o Wrong because it has been labeled as wrong, we are not born knowing
that it is wrong
▪ Ie speeding, driving without insurance, drug use
What is crime?
o An act or omission prohibited by criminal law (public law)
o Omission means a failure to perform an act
o Subject to sanctions by formal authority
▪ Crime is formal deviance
o Key ingredients:
▪ Actus Reus -> the actual act of doing it
▪ Mens rea -> guilty mind
▪ No legal defence
• “crime” words associated with it
o abuse s s s
who is the criminal?
o We often think about criminals as people who rob, and kill and not as
much as white collar crimes
o It is more interesting to read about robbery then white collar crimes
o When people see things closer to home they become more involves, we
do no feel close to white collar crime
Instant vs taking longer
▪ Getting shot is right away but environmental issues take longer to
o If someone engages in crime are they a bad person?
▪ What we consider to be a crime or deviant will not always stay