Criminology Cumulative Review.docx

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Carleton University
Criminology and Criminal Justice
CRCJ 1000
Evelyn Maeder

1Criminology Study Notes What is criminology and criminal justiceIt is the study of crime and the administration of criminal justice It is a multidisciplinary can take the form of a number of perspectives How do we identify crimeantisocialharmful behaviourHow is crime defined Aetiology How is crime causedHow do we react to crimeHow does societythe government the justice system respond How do we measure crime Criminology as a scientific Theory Variablessomething that varies eg age gender criminality Conceptsabstract and not directly measurable Eg happiness Operational definitionsthe specific procedure of observation used to measure the concept Eg a smile Thus variables can have both a conceptual level and an operational definition or severalCritiques Might miss a vital part of the social world meaning Argument raised by interpretive criminologists Some argue for a more qualitative approach Scientific approach is not necessarily the best or the only way of studying crime Progress in the study of crime and criminal justice depends on contrasting viewsTheoretical Perspectives Classical Criminology Cesare Beccaria treatise written in 1764 Argued for a more rational approach to punishment Relationship between crime and punishment should be fair Based on utilitarianismthe philosophy that benefits should be maximized and harm minimized Thus laws should promote the greatest good for the greatest number of people People have free willthey can choose to commit crime or notPeople choose to commit crime because it requires less work for a greater payoff than does conventional behaviour Peoples choices to commit crime can be controlled using fear of punishmentThe effectiveness of a punishment to control criminal behaviour depends on its severity certainty and swiftnessLegal PositivismCame about as a result of advances in biology Lombrosoastronomy and chemistryinspired the use of ascientific approach to study human behaviour Studied cadavers in an attempt to find physicaldifferences between criminals and lawabiders Scientific method Believed that people were born criminalsPosited that born criminals inherit atavistic Phrenologyusing the shape of the skullbumps anomaliestraits on the skull to determine whether these physical Physical characteristics of that indicate that they attributes are linked to criminal behaviour are throwbacks to more primitive timesSociological CriminologyQueteletmathematician who investigated the 2influence of social factors eg sex age on the propensity to commit crimeDurkheimargued that crime can be useful for societysignals the need for social change Anomienorm and role confusion stems from rapidly shifting moral values in a societyThe Chicago SchoolMade up of Park Burgess and Worth together with their colleagues in the sociology department at the University of Chicago in the early 20th centuryPioneered research on social ecology of the city Concluded that social forces operating in urban centres foster criminal interactions The higher the level of social disorganization in a neighbourhood the higher the crime rate is likely to beConflict CriminologyApplication of Marxist principles to the study of crime and justiceBourgeoisieowners of the means of production Capitalist ruling classProletariatlabourers Working classFor Marx the relationship between these two groups determines all aspects of human life Later sociologists would apply this theory to the study of crime and analyze the conditions that were seen to promote conflict between classescrime Crime vs Deviance Deviance behaviour that does not comport with social norms An act can be criminal but not necessarily deviant and viceversa However there is great overlap between crime and deviance Distinctions Norms settings and sanctionCrime Three Perspectives Consensus View Posits that in general people agree about which behaviours shouldbe viewed as crimes and be prohibited by criminal lawAssumes that the definition of crime is a function of societys beliefs and moral views and that it is applied uniformly to all members of society Conflict view Society is made up of diverse groups who are in a constant state of conflictCriminal law is created to protect the haves and suppress the havenotsDefinition of crime is controlled by those in positions of power 3 All laws have political undertones Interactionist View Assumes that people determine an actions meaning by evaluating others reactions to it and reevaluate their behaviour accordinglyDefinition of crime reflects the preferences of those people who impose their definitions of right and wrong on the rest of societyCrimes are prohibited by law because society has defined them that way not because they are inherently morally badMoral entrepreneurspowerful groups or people who attempt to control society and law to promote their personal valuesWhat is law LegalPositivismLaw must be separate from Classical Legal Positivism AustinCommand morality separability thesis Theory Law is the command of the sovereign What the law should be has no relationship with backed up by sanctions An archaic viewthere is what the law actually is no longer one sovereign but manyPrinciples A positive law is binding even if it iscompletely immoral and no moral principle is Commandexpression of the desire that a person legally binding unless it has actually been enacted act in a certain way into law The idea that law is strictly law ielegislature cases Law and morality are separate Sovereignin a society the one member or some Law is socially constructedwhich is accepted if small body of individuals that is superior to all everyone has access to it Valid processvalid others in the society superior meaning that the society is in the habit of obeying this person or lawpersons and this person does not obey anyone else Conventional Legal Positivist HLA Hart Lawis a system of rules Sanctionspenalty for noncompliance Primary rulesrules that impose duties and Critique however holds power is law A person obligations rules that tell people how to act These holding a gun has power therefore defines laware only as good as the secondary rulesSecondary rulesrules of recognition rules of change rules of adjudication How do people know that the primary rules are Must make laws accessible to societyNatural Law Theory Law cannot be separated FullerInternal Morality of the Law The from morality overlap thesis An immoral law is kingdom of Rex 8 ways to fail to make a lawnot a law at all 1 Deciding issues on a casebycase basisClassical Natural Law Aquinas four types of 2 Failure to make the rules available to the public law Eternal lawlaws of the universe governed by 3 Application of retroactive legislationdivine reason Biological and chemical lawspsychological truths4 How can anybody follow a rule that nobody can Divine lawdisclosed through divine revelation understand
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