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Lecture 19

ANTHRO 169 Lecture Notes - Lecture 19: Routine Activity TheoryPremium

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Jeffrey Brantingham

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Necessary Conditions
- There must be: a motivated offender, with a suitable victim in a setting where they know
they can get away with a crime. (3 main things need to be included in order for a crime to
Separation in Space and Time
Offender ————————>Victim/target.
- offender may travel where the victim is.
Offender <—————–––––– victim/target
- victim travels where the offender is
Offender< ——————- >victim/target
- both offender and victim may encounter each other at the same time.
Routine Activity Theory
- Crimes can only occur where the offender finds accessible victims under the absence of
- Since people are mostly always alone, this already the “ideal” conditioned to be
victimized since they are alone.
- This has been a very influential theory in criminology.
- Considered a “physical process” that links an offender to a target.
- This is how space and time brings together an offender and a target.
- This theory suggests that a crime happens throughout our daily routines, there are no
additional circumstances that can potentially cause a crime, it can just happen at any
given time given any activity we engage in on a regular basis.
- Everything we do everyday is an opportunity to be victimized.
- A crime will not occur if any of these pieces are taken out: motivated offender, suitable
target/victim, and appropriate setting must all be present for a crime to occur.
- A measurable aspect of a crime.
- ex: distance between an offender’s home location and the place they robbed.
- This shows that crimes happens close to where people live.
- These patterns are seen in every single form of crime.
- This relates to the not-from-here fallacy.
- How far do people travel before they twit?
- they do so when they are super close to home.
- Same thing goes with crime; it always happens near where the offender lives.
Activity and Awareness Spaces
- Our awareness is built based on a daily routines.
- We build awareness spaces in areas that we are familiar with.
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