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Marxist Criminology.docx

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Carolyn Gordon

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Marxist Criminology “The history of all existing society is the history of class struggle” True or False: Poor people commit the majority of crime in society? - False Someone who embezzles money or doesn’t declare all of their taxes often receives a much more severe sentence than someone who steals $1500 worth of merchandise - False Canadians are 18 times more likely to be murdered than to die from a work-related illness or injury - False Why is white collar crime not seen as a Problem? - Not a direct victim Law and the conflict perspective - Laws aren’t good for everybody, but they are for people with money - The poor tend to be targeted - The law in both its codification and its application is not neutral but reflects the interest of and benefits the powerful segments of society Law and the consensus perspective - The law is the codification of dominant social values and its application functions to benefit the majority Level of Analysis - Macro Approach o Focus on the large scale structures of society - Critical Theory o Questions existing social arrangements Why is it that some groups in society are more likely to be labelled as criminals? Some behaviours in society are deemed deviant because people in power are said so Karl Marx (1818 – 1883) - Jewish heritage but converted to Christianity - Marginal social location - Not concerned with the “dangerous classes” Social and Intellectual Context - Industrial revolution Capitalist Society - Economic system of wage-labour and commodity production for sale and profit - 3 classes o Bourgeoisie o Proletariat o Lumpenproletariat - Capitalism makes crime inevitable 4 types of worker alienation: - The process - The products - Fellow workers - Themselves Infrastructure and Superstructure - The infrastructure shapes the superstructure - Infrastructure controlled by ruling class so superstructure controlled by
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