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Exam Review.docx

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Department
Sociology
Course
SOC 1500
Professor
Mavis Morton
Semester
Fall

Description
SOC 1500 Exam Review Counting Crime Methods - Official Records o Police Stats: Uniform Crime Report (only counts serious crimes), Crime Severity Index o Judicial Stats: Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics (CCJS) o Correctional Stats: CSC, Department of Justice - Self-Repot Studies - Victimization Surveys - Observational Accounts Factors Influencing Crime Rate - Crime rates are report-sensitive (feeling that nothing will be done, embarrassed, fear) - Crime rates are policing sensitive (zero tolerance, lack of resources) - Crime rates are definition sensitive (changes in law cause definition of crimes to change - Crime rates are media sensitive (media focuses on events that cause people to become th enraged Ex: Sept. 11 ) - Crime rates may really be changing Media Medias Coverage of Crime & Its Consequences - Overdramatize crime o Crime waves/moral panics o Over-reporting violent crime (Police focus on more violent crime to please the media and public) o Neglecting white collar crime - Crime myths o Racial and ethnic minorities (Media focuses on white crime truth is crime is interracial) o Youth (Always considered violent crimes) o Virtuous crimes (Media focuses on innocent victims young children and women, adds more if they are white) Media Influences on the Public - Do not report declining crime rates - Publishes national crime figures ONCE a year - Rarely put crime stories in statistical context Representation of Crime - Criminal behaviour is decontextualized from the structured nature of society - Media tends to represent the unusual as the usual - Crime related to morality and its decline - Pictures and headlines Representation of Criminalized Women - Pathologised o Insane gripped by biological forces beyond their control - Infantalized o Treated like children passive, weak, gullible and easily led astray (will blindly follow men into a life of crime) - Demonized o Criminal women are purely evil - Sexualized o Morally bankrupt o Sex kitten - Masculine/Lesbian o Any woman who breaks a stereotypical passive role I deviant and likely to be a criminal o Strong women in movies are depicted as masculine and lesbian characters are often presented as villains Theories Emphasis on Individual Classical School (Beccaria and Bentham) - Crime is a result of the exercise of free will based on the calculation of costs and benefits (Ex: save money by stealing) - Concepts: o Individual rights (No one has the right to take away anothers rights) o Human capacity to reason (Free will) o Rule of Law - Beccaria: o Social contract o Rule of Law o Punishment should deter crime be swift, certain and proportional to the crime - Bentham o Utilitarianism o Panopticon (central viewing station of all cells) - Heritage: o Rationality humans have free will, and actions are a result of choice o Hedonism pleasure and pain, or reward and punishment are chosen o Punishment criminal punishment is a deterrent to unlawful behaviour o Human Rights society owes its citizens respect for their human rights in the face of government action o Due process presumed innocent until proven otherwise- Critiques: o General principles did not always serve justice (Children and mentally ill cannot be held responsible for their actions o Equality BEFORE the law masks a world of deep social inequalities (age, income, etc.) o Punishment has differential impacts New Right Criminology - Political orientation instead of systematic theory - Economic efficiency above all - Law and Order - Biological - 2 themes: o Responsibility for crime is all on the individual o Reasserting the importance of punishment to crime - Offenders responsible for their actions - Extent and seriousness of crime highlighted - Harsher penalties - Law and Order common sense assumptions: o Crime rates are soaring o Crime is worse than ever o Criminal justice system is soft on crime o Criminal justic
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