CRJ 404 Lecture 5: Macro Level Theories

49 views5 pages

For unlimited access to Class Notes, a Class+ subscription is required.

Chapter 5 Macro Level Theories
Social Structural Theories of Delinquency
Traditional sociological theories that are considered sociological positivist theories.
Utilize a positivist approach.
Social structural theorists take a deterministic position on delinquency.
Factors outside of the conscious control individuals.
Social organization of society and/or the environment, influence or determine,
delinquency.
Two Types of Macro Level Theories
Two general types of macro level theories: Anomie theory and Social Disorganization
theory.
These theories consider the role of large scale-social change on human behavior, and the
effect of the environment on individuals.
If we want to figure out why youth are committing acts of delinquency, we will want to
step outside and take a look at the world around us!
Anomie Theories
Anomie theories are theories that consider how the society is structured, and how that
structure impacts our ability to follow social norms.
Society is based on a set of norms and that most community members share these norms.
When people go against the norms, it is typically because they are experiencing forces in
their social world that are leading them to do so.
Origins of Anomie Theory
French theorist, Emile Durkheim (1858-1917) was a man of many “firsts”.
Earned the first PhD in sociology in France.
Taught the first sociology class in France.
He was a consensus theorist who believed society is best described as being based on a
loose consensus.
Assumed that we all share a basic sense of right or wrong and that laws and other rules
reflect the values that we share.
Believed collective conscience was strong.
Believed we have fragmented division of labor.
find more resources at oneclass.com
find more resources at oneclass.com
Unlock document

This preview shows pages 1-2 of the document.
Unlock all 5 pages and 3 million more documents.

Already have an account? Log in
Robert Merton’s Anomie (Strain) Theory
People are inspired to break some rules or laws.
Merton explained the unregulated desires were woven into the very fabric of the
“American Dream.”
Merton claimed that in society the desire to obtain these material and financial wealth are
the primary cultural goals.
All people do not have access to the legitimate means of accomplishing these goals.
Adapting to Strain
Five ways that people adapt to this strain:
1. Conformity
2. Innovation
3. Ritualism
4. Retreatism
5. Rebellion
Differential Opportunity Theory
Richard Cloward and Lloyd Ohlin expanded theory.
Focused upon the question of how a person’s access to illegitimate means affects the
shape of their adaptations to anomie and strain.
Argued not equal access to illegitimate means of obtaining cultural goals.
Found “criminal subcultures,” arose in the face of limited legitimate opportunities.
As a means of expressing frustration, people often turn to violence.
Boys attempt to gain respect through physical force and intimidation.
Conflict subcultures develop as a result of a lack of both legitimate and illegitimate
opportunities for youth.
In poor or working class neighborhoods, Cloward and Ohlin stated that retreatist
subcultures would be found.
Subcultural Theory of Delinquency
Albert Cohen’s subcultural theory of delinquency was also informed by Merton’s
anomie theory.
Strain comes from not being able to succeed at middle-class standards.
Finds that the subcultural responses do not serve a concrete purpose other than satisfying
an emotional one.
Behaviors that the members of the group engage in typically work against them in a
culture that values hard work and the pursuit of long-term goals.
find more resources at oneclass.com
find more resources at oneclass.com
Unlock document

This preview shows pages 1-2 of the document.
Unlock all 5 pages and 3 million more documents.

Already have an account? Log in

Get access

Grade+
$10 USD/m
Billed $120 USD annually
Homework Help
Class Notes
Textbook Notes
40 Verified Answers
Study Guides
1 Booster Class
Class+
$8 USD/m
Billed $96 USD annually
Homework Help
Class Notes
Textbook Notes
30 Verified Answers
Study Guides
1 Booster Class