WDW370H1 Lecture 4

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Department
Woodsworth College Courses
Course
WDW101Y1
Professor
Bucerius
Semester
Winter

Description
1 WDW370H1 Youth Justice January 30, 2012 Lecture 4 Term paper now due the 26 th 10 page library research paper – APA citation style Focus on 3 main things: public concern or political attention that has recently been given to topic, things that appears in press, magazines, television, concerns about gangs, drugs, etc introduce paper as launching pad for what you’ll be talking about. Looking for policy implications based on paper, how can findings that you’ve discovered, how can it better inform CJ policy or critique what’s currently in place? Reflect on this towards end of paper (paragraph or two). Finally, paper is analytical and not descriptive, make research question and formulate thesis statement that you stick to throughout the paper. Starting off general and making it more specific. Test next week – 2 hours - 2 parts - Part one will be something around 20 multiple choice questions based on lecture and readings, worth 1 point each - Part two will be essay questions, choice between any 2 of three essay questions – based on course readings and lectures. Worth 15 points each for a total of 30. - Test is out of 50. - Essay question, two sides, single spaced Last week clarification – Student surveys how to get prevalence out of incidence measures – How would you come up with prevalence measure? (Qualitative measure where you’re grouping population into two) based on that definition what would be a prevalence indicator/measure for males and females who answered the question whether or not they were involved with stealing something over the past yea – those who have and those who haven’t. – Breaking group into those who have and those who haven’t Incidence measure, how would that be calculated 85% of high school students said they had a drink in the past year (prevalence), what you don’t know is are they drinking once a year or once a day – ask on occasion how often they drink then you get more detailed assessment of who is drinking and when. How many of the 85% just drinks once? Incidence is able to get at the details. Crime rates are often calculated as one or the other Prevalence will always be a ratio measurement Explaining Youth Crime Something Criminologists have been doing for a long time. Three perspectives that can be used to explain youth crime Non-Scientific Views - Based on what we read what might be some examples? – Declining morals, demon worship where criminals were thought to be possessed by evil spirits, Beccaria and Bentham – founders of classical school, their ideas are important but they are not scientific. What does it take for a theory to be scientific? You need data and observations. Perspectives had no systematic observation so the idea of the classical 2 school by Beccaria and Bentham – what was their understanding of crime? There was no systematic understanding for what causes youth crime in comparison to adult crime? Up until later there were no laws explaining/differentiating offenders and crime. - Basically human being’s were organisms whose main goal in life was to maximize pleasure and minimize pain. They argue you need some level of realistic deterrent to balance this out. At time really harsh crimes – so they said you need to have proportional crime to severity of offence. They were trying to think of a rational calculus – in utilitarian times – greatest good for the greatest number of people. But they did not base it on systematic observations. They were more philosophical. Key thing is there was no separate way of thinking of youth crime. Most crime was considered to just be subject to adults. - Then came in Lombroso who did a lot of scientific work in the sense that he counted and measured things. He believed criminals were evolutionary throwbacks – atavism: stage akin to a biological throwback. Criminals were not seen as being evolved as far as non- criminals. What evidence did he use to support that contention? Body types, physical abnormalities, he compared prisoners with those in the military. He noted criminals had certain facial feature and structure. In a sense then, criminals were born and had no control over criminal tendencies. Still no attention given to youth separated from adults. He did make some distinction between why men and women are criminogenic than females and for females involved in crime what makes them unique? ** look in text. o Police will criminally profile based on how people look o Key thing Lombroso can be criticized on is there is no such thing as atavism – there are no atavists in the population. Secondly his methodology – looking at military and men in prison based these differences on explanation of criminality. What was wrong with that deduction? Criminals may look a certain way because they were in jail for periods of time. So these body types could be a product of conditions in jail than anything else. Biological criminology did not end with th Lombroso. Began to flourish by mid 20 century - Twin studies: Nature vs. nurture – identical twins have identical DNA so is criminality genetic? Compared to those with twins who were not identically. Thinking they would find that if one was criminal the other would be as well. Research found very little differences between the two. - Sheldon – psychologist interested in germ plasma and how it affected body type. According to him there were three body types: o Endomorphs - soft, overweight, not particularly violent or criminal o Ectomorphs – thin, fragile, not involved with crime o Mesomorphs – muscular, extraverts, more likely to involve in crime. - A lot of thought surrounding idea that you can identify a criminal based on body type - Sheldon and Eleanor Gluech study – Some of their work supported work of Sheldon saying body type is linked to crime. If you want to be in a gang you had to be tough for example so that could possibly explain why body types of mesomorphs come up more frequently among criminals. This look could be just as much social as it is physical, people construct these looks to present themselves in a certain way. - Today there’s a lot of thinking that would still suggest for young people that criminals are born not made. Some examples of youth who don’t have a lot of control over being criminal – ADHD, kids are hyperactive, may not be their fault – this is a biological theory of crime. Brain injury – a lot of the kids have had brain trauma who are involved with crime. Their behaviour can be very sporadic and it is a result of the brain injury. Led poisoning, Fetal alcohol syndrome – all biological explanations of crime that are common place today 3 - Problems with biological theories is sometimes they’re hard to prove and often there is no causal explanation, correlation but not cause - Crime is seen as something that people are born with and social environment isn’t considered to play a big role. On the other hand sociological and psychological thinking believes environment can play huge role in criminal behaviour 60’s and 70’s psychological views on criminal behaviour - Social learning theory – crime is learned, copy cat, things like video games are seen to be more prone to crime because of this copy cat effect. Early theory of this was done by Bandura. Kids in control and experimental group – watch violent show vs. not violent and then have them gather in a room with Bobo dolls. Kids who watched violent tv were likely to be more aggressive towards bobo dolls. Concluded that kids model what’s going on and that can lead to aggressive behaviour. But how can you apply laboratory settings to real world? Bobo doll effect wore off so no, it doesn’t necessarily translate in the real world, and it’s more immediate response to watching violence. - Freud’s theories - Most from a psychological perspective looks at very early years. Family is seen as key here – kids who are abused and subject to a lot of violence. Sociological Approaches - Early sociological theories did focus on youth - Chicago School – Thrasher and Shaw and McKay – they did look at young people so their perspectives are formulated on observations of young people in Chicago - Thrasher wrote a book called the gang – study of gangs in Chicago and he interviewed a couple thousand gang members and concluded that these were normal boys living in abnormal situations. In other words it was the abnormal environment that these people were living in that sort of made gang life attractive. - A lot of this thinking relates back to the work of Durkheim – he felt that society through controls and through pressures has a great influence on behaviour. To what extent does Durkheim’s work influence CS* - Shaw and McKay – crime statistics in Chicago. Looked at Chicago and they would map where crime was committed. They were using official police statistics. What they found was that if you were sort of to map crime that the majority of police calls and police reported crime was concentrated in the ring around what they termed central business district – linked to work of Burgess who came up with concentric zone theory. - Concentric zone theory – cities grow in an organic function, using Chicago as an example they found that cities start small and expand. Loo
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