Crim midterm #2 review
Ch5: Offend and Social Control theories
- Motivational Theories
o The wish/desire to offend/ commit a crime is what separates offenders from non-
offenders, suggesting that non-offenders don’t have the desire at all. Critics to
this theory say that its more about the ability or willing to actually act on this
desire. This relates to the reason why investogators always look for the initial
motivation of the offender to solve crimes
- Informal Social Controls
o Social controls are methods used to conform people into the approved
behaviours of society. Relationships with people who support and promote these
conformities have relate to if the values are internalized. These people are often
teachers, parents, and peers.
- Containment theory
o These relate to the many facors that can “push” or “pull” crime. This theory is by
Walter Reckless, 1967. There are two types of containments. Firstly, Inner
containments relate to socialization and a good self-concept (views self
positively). This also relates to the psychic make up of the individual – of self
concept is “good”, then the individual can tolerate frusteration, practice strong
responsibility, and set clear future goals. He believes that this is the more
important control of the two. Secondly, outer containments, which are primary
groups that set standards for this behaviour. This is mainly in the family setting,
where the individual feels a sense of belonging and standards are set.
- Theory of the Bond
o By Travis Hirschi, 1969. Criminal activity is a result of someone having weakened
ties to conform to society. Weakness of social bond results in narrow self-interest,
triggers lying, cheating, and stealing. There are usually 4 strands of these
Commitment: family, career, success, future goals. Ex. The time and
energy spent in conventional activities like studying (to obtain good
grades and thus be successful). If more time is invested in this, there is
vitually no time to be delinquent.
Involvement: school activities, sports teams, community organizations,
religious groups social clubs. = participation in the conforming world.
Because other wise, “idle hands are the devil’s workshop” Belief: honesty, morality, fairness, patriotism, responsibility are conformist
values. Delinquents usually don’t value these aspects.
Attachment: to family, friends, the community – how sensitive children are
to expectations of parents and teachers effects their morals. If it is
important to them, theey are less likely to be delinquent (as this behaviour
o We can explain as to why some youth are delinquent while others are not by
looking for a weakening in these bonds.
- General The