Study Guides (238,281)
Canada (115,055)
Sociology (551)
SOC 2700 (58)
C Yule (1)


11 Pages
Unlock Document

University of Guelph
SOC 2700
C Yule

SOC 2700 POST MIDTERM REVIEW Control Theories: Social & Self Control (Week 7) - Crime is the result of lax social control efforts - Police can help prevent crime by enforcing less serious public order laws - Do residents feel safer when there is increased police presence in the neighbourhood? No. - Why don’t we all commit crime? o Fear of consequences (jail, family, monetary) o Social control theories are concerned with factors that prevent crime, not the factors that motivate crime. - We conform to norms in response to controlling forces (social bonds and internalized law- abiding norms) o When controls are absent we are more likely to commit crime. - Control theories assume that humans are self-interested and require socialization to prevent offending - Crime requires little skill and is opportunistic - Causal logic o Ties/bonds to conventional society are weakened therefore free to commit crime - Hirshci’s Social Bond Theory o Stakes in conformity  Social bonds to conventional society prevent crime/deviance  Stronger bonds = less likely to become deviant o Elements of Social Bond  Attachment  Connection to conventional people (parents, family, teachers)  Sensitivity to interests of others  Commitment  Dedicated to conventional activities  Time, energy and effort is spent in non-criminal activity  Commitment to school, good grades, decent job.  Involvement  Proportion of time is spent in conventional activities  Limits opportunity for crime  Belief  Respect for law/authority  Sees laws as fair  Strong sense of moral obligation - Self-Control Theory o Crime is easy, gratifying, requires little skill and provides excitement o Offenders have low self- control  Not that they don’t have good bonds, just as individuals they have low self- control. o Low self-control is a stable construct  Once you have low self-control you will always have it.  Develops through early childhood socialization o Not only leads to crime but to other deviant behaviours:  Criminal, cigarette smoking, getting drunk, risk taking, sexual intercourse with someone known less than 24 hours.  Analogous (deviant) behaviours and crime are not causally related, but both are caused by low self-control. o Causes of low self-control  Family socialization  Lack of nurtuance/attachment/supervision/parental low self-control -> sets bad examples.  Socialization at School  Serves as good tool for socialization  Doesn’t have ties like parents do, so can correct behaviour  Self-control is developed by 8 years of age, therefore schooling as a tool of development comes too late during development - Characteristics of Self-Control o Self-control scale  Impulsivity  Simple tasks –frequent try to avoid projects I know will be difficult  Risk seeking  Physical Activity – feels better to be on the move  Self-centeredness – try to look out for myself first  Temper – loss of temper easily - Social Bond vs Social Control o Social Bond  People’s involvement in crime can ebb and flow  At certain times in your life your bonds may be stronger thus criminal behaviour changes  Locates control in a person’s relation to society o Self-Control  Criminality is set in childhood  You likelihood of engaging in crime will be stable (by 8 years of age) and will not “ebb and flow”  Control is internal to the individual  Rooted mostly in the family/child care/schools - Criticisms of Control Theories o Suggests motivation is irrelevant (if connections to society are weak, crime will occur). o Ignores crime in groups  Crime is thought of as a lone activity o Ignores differences b/w serious and minor delinquency o Ignores situations/structural factors  Ignores things like “strains” (roles that homelessness plays in deciding to engage in crime). o Causal Ordering  Do weak social bonds cause people to be involved in crime or is it plausible that by engaging in crime it weakens social bonds? - Social and Criminal Justice Implications o Need action early in childhood o Identify weak families and strengthen the family and improve the quality of their child- rearing practices. o Community programs  Big Brother/Big Sister  YMCA  Scouts o Hard punishments are not a good idea  Jail/isolation for a long period of time will only further weaken social bonds  Self-control is determined at a young age, punishment later in life would be pointless. Labelling Theories (Week 8) - Focus on social and institutional response to the individual - Assumptions: o Human Nature  Largely passive, forced into the role of a criminal o Nature of Society  The law is differentially applied to different groups in society  Law is used to benefit those who hold economic/social power  Penalize those who have less economic/social power in society  Conflict-based approach o Nature of Crime  Nothing is inherently harmful  Deviance and crime are in the eye of the beholder - Charles Horton Cooley o The “looking glass self”  Perception/reaction to how other people react to us  Social interaction/how we perceive ourselves begins the moment we are born. - Edwin Lemert o Primary Deviation  Situational Behaviour  Could be excused or rationalized  Has not self-identified as a criminal yet o Secondary Deviation  What is likely to result in labelling  Not a single act, repetitive  Label becomes their primary identity o Deviance Amplification Effect  Feel isolated from society & results in locking them in a more criminal role  At this point, may seek out others who have been labeled similarly and again this serves to entrench people in the role of criminality. - Becker “Outsiders” o Perceived as deviant  Conforming Behaviour  Falsely accused (identified as criminals but are misjudged) (haven’t engaged in criminal behaviour)  Norm-Violating Behaviour  Purely deviant (people who engage in crime and get labeled, caught and punished. o NOT perceived as deviant  Confirming Behaviour  Group of people who are law abiding citizens  Norm-Violating Behaviour  Secret Deviant o People who commit acts of deviance/crime but it has gone undetected. - Policy Implications o Radical non-intervention -> DO NOTHING o Overlook offending behaviour in order to avoid entrenching people in it. - Reintegrative Shaming o Two types:  Disentegrative or Stigmatic Shaming  Reaction that serves to disintegrate the moral bonds between the offender and the community.  Sets offender apart as outcast  Ex. Criminal record – follows you your whole life  Sexual offender registry, going to prison, going through the court system.  Reintegrative Shaming  Strengthens the moral bonds b/w offender and community  Condemns crime, not the criminal  Provides offenders with oppurtunities to rejoin their community as law- abiding citizens - Criticisms of Labelling Theory o Over-emphasis on the importance of the label o Empirical research does not support that being labeled is enough to be set on a course of offending. o Difficult to test o Difficult to falsify  Difficult to disentangle the label from the other aspects of their lives. Conflict Theory (Week 9) - Main focus is how law operates as a weapon of social control, used to protect the interests of the ruling class/and or the state - Interested in the way criminal reacts to social agents rather than the criminal act itself - Rules are made by the powerful to regulate the conduct of the powerless - Rules preserve the preferred way of life for the powerful even when its harmful to tohers or forces them into criminal roles - People who break the rules do so either out of need or in protest against a system that oppresses them. - Power is the most important explanatory variable - Crime is neither normal, nor inevitable o Conflict theorists say that people break laws because they feel as though something is wrong within the system. - Instrumental Marxism o Definitions of crime are made by the state in the interests of the propertied class. - Structural Marxism o The state preserves itself by protecting the capitalist system but not necessarily by protecting all capitalists. - Poor arrest records, probation reports, prison statistics - Offenders committing the worst offenses do not show up in our criminal justice systems - The carnival mirror: distorted reflection o Our criminal justice system throws back a false imagine (proportions are distorted) Gender-Based Theories (Week 10) - Males outnumber females as offenders in all societies & time periods for which records are available - The more serious the crime, the more males outnumber females - Although female and male offenders engage in different crimes in distinctive ways, they have much in common o Early lives, personal characteristics & motivations appear to be more similar than different o Social environments that increase their risks of offending are similar - Historically offending by women was considered: o Insane (mental illness) o Demonic possession o Tended to be neglected overall (just don’t say anything) o Only fairly recently have people begun to focus on women’s criminality o Female criminals were deemed to be unnatural, odd, unfeminine - Why are women often forgotten o Commit fewer crimes than men o Female criminality tends to be less serious than male criminality o Historically women have tended to be excluded from the justice system due to leniency - Gender gap may decrease if o Female and male crimes both decrease, but the former decreases more o Female rates increase while male decreases or remains stable o Female & male rates both increase, but former decreases more - Shortcoming of Traditional Theo
More Less

Related notes for SOC 2700

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.