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Western University
Sociology 2259
Lauren Barr

Final Exam Article Notes Sociology 2259 On Being Sane in Insane Places – D.L. Rosenhan -Normality and abnormality are not universal -The view has grown that psychological categorization of mental illness is useless at best and downright harmful, misleading, and pejorative at worst -Psychiatric diagnoses, in this view, are in the minds of the observers and are not valid summaries of characteristics displayed by the observed -Normality is distinct enough that it can be recognized wherever it occurs, for it is carried within the person -Experiment: 8 sane people gained secret admission to 12 different hospitals Pseudopatients and Their Settings -Patients were a varied group -Three psychologists, a pediatrician, a psychiatrist, a painter, and a housewife -Three women 5 men -12 hospitals -Located in 5 different states -Choice of symptoms was occasioned by their apparent similarity to existential symptoms -Immediately upon admission to the psychiatric ward, the pseudopatient ceased stimulating any symptoms of abnormality -None of the patients thought they would be admitted so easily -No secret made of writing observations The Normal Are Not Detectable Sane -The pseudopatients were not detected -With a diagnosis of schizophrenia patients were discharged with ‘in remission’ -Once labeled a schizophrenic, the pseudopatient was stuck with that label -Length of hospitalization lasted from 7-52 days – average of 19 days -Their daily visitors could detect no serious behavioral consequences- no indeed could other patients -Physicians operate with a strong bias toward what the statisticians call the type 2 error -More inclined to call a healthy person sick than a sick person healthy -Clearly more dangerous to misdiagnose illness -Psychiatric diagnoses carry with them personal, legal, and social stigmas -Experiment -Staff member asked to rate on a scale of 1-10 if a person was a pseudopatient -No genuine pseudopatient presented himself during this period -Instructive – indicates that the tendency to designate sane people as insane can be reversed when the stakes are high -Any diagnostic process that lends itself so readily to massive errors of this sort cannot be a very reliable one The Stickiness of Psychodiagnostic Labels -Having once been labeled as schizophrenic, there is nothing the pseudopatient can do to overcome the tag – colors others’ perceptions of him and his behaviour -There are “central” personality traits which are so powerful that they markedly colour the meaning of other information in forming an impression of a given personality -Patients were never questioned about their note taking -Given that the patient is in the hospital he must be psychologically disturbed -Behaviours that are stimulated by the environment are commonly misattributed to the patient’s disorder -The notes kept by pseudopatients are full of patient behaviours that were misinterpreted by well-intentioned staff -Label endures beyond discharge -Eventually the patient himself accepts the diagnosis, with all of its surplus meanings and expectations, and behaves accordingly -The sane are not sane all the time – lose our temper “for no good reason” The Experience of Psychiatric Hospitalization -Doubtful that people really regard the mentally ill in the same way that they view the physically ill -The average time spent outside of the cage was 11.3% -Physicians and psychiatrists were less available than nurses -Those with the most power have least to do with patients and those with the least power are more involved with them -The amount of time a person spends with you can be an index of your significance to them -Staff avoided continuing contacts that patients had initiated -Most common response consisted of either a brief response to the question, offered while they were “on the move” and with head averted, or no response at all The Sources of Depersonalization -Attitudes help by all of us toward the mentally ill characterized by fear, distrust, and horrible expectations on the one hand and benevolent intentions on the other -The hierarchal structure of the psychiatric hospital facilitates depersonalization -Psychiatric installations are presently in serious financial straits -Patient contact is not a significant priority in the traditional psychiatric hospital, and fiscal pressures do not account for this -Avoidance and depersonalization may -Heavy reliance upon psychotropic medication tacitly contributes to depersonalization by convincing staff that treatment is indeed being conducted and that further patient contact may not be necessary The Consequences of Labeling and Depersonalization -We tend to invent “knowledge” and assume that we simply understand more than we actually do -Diagnoses are often not useful or reliable, but we have nevertheless continued to use them -Type 2 error in psychiatric diagnoses does not have the same consequences it does in medical diagnosis -Goffman calls the process of socialization to such institutions mortification The Recriminalization of Dissent – Tony Clarke -New anti-terrorism legislation – gives law enforcement intrusive new powers and the wherewithal to detain a person as a criminal solely on the basis of ideology -This predated the attacks of the New World Order -Imbalance between protest, freedom, and order or dissent and democracy -Right to dissent is being criminalized -Dissent as an act of terrorism 1. The process of criminalizing dissent was well underway before 9/11 2. The post 9/11 anti-terrorist legislation in Canada go a long way toward entrenching the criminalization of dissent -C-35 and C-36 – any interference with these internationally protected persons can be seen as terrorist activity -C-36 – “terrorist activity” covering protest and dissent -“Participating, facilitating, instructing, and harbouring” -New investigative power for search and seizure 3. The USA PATRIOT Act gives sweeping new powers to police and military forces in the US, which will have an impact on freedom, justice, and order in Canada -“Sneak and peak” provisions – now able to search and seize property of a suspect without them knowing 4. New definition of terrorism as “ideologically motivated” empowers law enforcement officers to target the ideology that lies behind peoples actions -A person’s political ideology can be cited as evidence of his or her engaging in criminal activity 5. A prime target of the new wave of anti-terrorist legislation is, therefore, the movement against corporate globalization itself -New laws have been crafted to cast the dragnet so wide as to catch the dissenters of the new world order and to criminalize the act of dissent -The current rallying cry of anti-terrorism Is being used as a smokescreen for a much larger political agenda -Growing threat to democracy that looms in the wake of the events after 9/11 Russian Organized Crime in America – Robert J. Rush Jr. & Frank R. Scarpitti Enterprise Theory: An Explanation of Russian Émigré Crime -Enterprise theory emerged from the scholarship that critically challenged the issues proposed by the alien-conspiracy and ethnic theories of organized crime -Enterprise theory came from Italian-American crime families -Enterprise Theory: Defining elements that may be applied to any group of individuals associated to fulfill the market demand for illegal goods and services -Most criminal ventures characterized as organized crime are entrepreneurial and are driven by economic concerns -Shared values and interests among the participants -The participants -Are independent entrepreneurs who exhibit flexibility in their criminal activities -Pursue illegal opportunities that are opportunistic, characterized by a public demand, provide good financial return and expose them to minimal risk -Usually small, centralized operations with little specialization, short hierarchies, and formalization based on socialization -The Russian émigré -Small and lack any formal hierarchal structure although they do have a leader -Fluid and dynamic -Market oriented and economically motivated -Like-minded individuals who share a common cultural identity and adhere to the same value system -Most from same social system -Participation in motor fuel tax fraud cases Level of Sophistication: Criminal Activity of the Émigré Crime Groups O’Kane’s 6 Stages of Criminal Mobility 1. Individual Criminal -A loner who has no group or organization identity yet on occasion may join with other like-minded criminals -Short-lived -Italian – “Black Hand” methods of intimidation, extortion, and terrorism against fellow Italians 2. Intra-Ethnic Gang Rivalry -Individual criminal joins with other like-minded fellow ethnics in recognition that a group can be more effective in achieving criminal success in terms of financial return and power than the individual -Confidence schemes, theft, extortion, and murder -Escalation of violent crimes as a predominant characteristic of such groups -Immigrant gangs become established in their neighbourhoods – competition develops among separate groups for dominance -Russian émigré – attempted assassination of Victor Zilber and Russian gang leader Evsei Agron 3. Inter-Ethnic Gang Rivalry -Intra-ethnic groups consolidate resources and combine and work together to eliminate competition from other ethnic groups -The Russian émigré crime groups have not displayed any concentrated effort to consolidate their separate gangs to eliminate other ethnic crime groups -May not have reached confidence to challenge other groups -They are content to work in cooperative ventures with the Italian- Americans who have powerful contacts -Suggested the émigré crime groups have essentially bypassed this stage 4. Organized Criminal Accommodations -Competing ethnic groups of stage 3 find it counterproductive for all involved to work against each other -Work together to further the criminal enterprise -Prohibition – best known example of interethnic gang cooperation -Prohibition gave birth to organized crime as we know it today -Syndication was essential to the success of the venture in the interests of maximizing the financial return to the criminal enterprise -Combined efforts of Irish, Italian, and Jewish ethnic gangs from numerous locations throughout the US and Canada -This happened with Italians and Russian émigré for motor tax fuel fraud 5. Ethnic Gang Criminal Supremacy -Stage 4 breaks down, violence between competing ethnic groups reemerges because one of the ethnic factions becomes so powerful that it eliminates its rival – persuasion or violence -Best example – curtailing of Irish and Jewish competition by the Italian organizations in New York and Chicago 6. Decline and Fall of the Ethnic Gang -Criminal enterprises suffer as power and influence are weakened because of competition or increased scrutiny from law enforcement and the criminal justice community in general -Move into more respectable types of criminal activities – traditional street crimes receive less support and attention, creating a void that is quickly filled by the less sophisticated, newly emerging ethnic crime groups Summary -Russian émigré crime groups are presently operating at STAGE 4 -Cooperative ventures with the more dominant Italian-American organized crime families in motor fuel tax frauds -In LA they have skipped stage 4 and are situated at stage 5 Negotiating Post-War Identities: Child Soldiers in Mozambique and Angola – Alcinda Honwana -Angola and Mozambique – independence in 1975 -Adopted a Marxist orientation and socialist model of development -Opposition parties initiated a war -Children were drawn into armed conflict as active combatants -Mozambique National Resistance – RENAMO -United Front For the Total Liberation of Angola – UNITA Child Soldiers: A Worldwide Phenomenon -Many other African countries at war feature young combatants -Not peculiar to Africa -In Europe in the Middle Ages and nowadays Child Soldiers in Post-Colonial Conflicts in Africa -Phenomenon is rooted in the crisis of the post-colonial state in Africa -Ethnic conflicts over power sharing, identity, and access to resources -Incapacity of the state to provide for and protect its citizens -Collapse of social and economic structures in rural areas and the massive migration to urban areas -In Mozambique and Angola external pressures exacerbated the crisis -During the war, many youths become vulnerable to recruitment due to lack of opportunities in the countryside -Positions taken by some traditional chiefs who helped to recruit youth and children to join the rebel forces -Many also volunteer – often the only access to food and a sense of power -Extreme poverty, lack of infrastructure, and difficult environmental conditions continue – children return to these places after war Experiencing War and Violence -Estimated that more than 9,000+ children in Angola and 8,000-10,000 in Mozambique participated in the conflicts as soldiers -Both RENAMO and UNITA were active in recruiting children into their armies -Used to carry weapons and other equipment on the front lines -Based on the assumption that children are easier to control and manipulate, are easily programmed to think of war and only war, and are easily programmed to feel little fear or revolution for their actions Recruitment Into Violence -Taken from school, homes, and street -Kidnapped -Volunteer for protection, food, opportunities to loot and a sense of power -Angola – insecurity, vulnerability, boredom, and lack of food -Sense of security that a gun seems to provide -Direct involvement of the traditional authority -Direct encounter between the rebels, the children, and their families or was mediated by local chiefs Being in the War: Initiation to Violence and Terror -Heavy psychological pressure placed on children -Cutting the links of the children with society and programming them to think of war and only war -Dehumanize the children and turn them into killing machines -Penalty for failed escape was execution – recruits had to kill colleagues who tried to escape and sometimes had to suck and drink the blood of the victim -Some were forced to kill own relatives, raid and loot their own villages, or kill their neighbours -Give children new war names – forbidden to use their birth names -Constructed to enhance their combative morale and performance -They were brainwashed and subjected to the most violent psychological pressures to make them shed their previous identities and assume new ones, as merciless killers Michael de Ceteau (1984) – establishes an important distinction between strategies and tactics -Strategies as having long-term consequences or benefits -Tactics as means devised to cope with concrete circumstances even though those means are likely to have delirious long-term consequences -“Tactical Agency” – exercised to maximize the circumstances created by the constraints of the military environment in which they were forced to operate -They were conscious “tactical agents” who had to respond to the demands and pressures of their lives -The exercise of a “strategic” agency would imply a long-term consequence of seeing the results of their actions concretized in some form of political change – not the case The Quest for Reconciliation and Healing -Taken to demobilization centers -Reunited with families or placed in foster care -Mozambique – placed in a recuperation center in town and a group of child psychologists worked with them – unsuccessful -Recalling the traumatic experience through verbal externalization as a means to heal is not always effective Beyond PTSD -Trauma is not post but rather current and very much part of the everyday life – born during the war -Mipfhukwa – spirits of the dead killed during the war and have the capacity to harm those that killed them or mistreated them in life -Social pollution may arise from being in contact with the dead and bloodshed -Bringing this pollution home -Cleansing process is seen as a fundamental condition for collective protection against pollution and for the social reintegration of war affected people into society -Rituals performed for former child soldiers are aimed at dealing with what happened during the war -Children have to be cleansed ASAP to be able to socialized freely with relatives and friends -Symbolically breaking with the past – washing of body in the river and the burning of the hut and clothes brought from the war -Chicken and herbal remedies -Rituals aimed at asking for forgiveness, appeasing the souls of the dead, and preventing any future afflictions from the spirits of the dead -Forming of positive and negative identities -They return to a countryside that remains as poor as it was when they left, with no job opportunities and no vocational schools -Mozambique ended -Angola war did not stop Conclusion -Forced recruitment was the most common process of entering the military The Monster Within: How Male Serial Killers Discursively Manage Their Stigmatized Identities – Jayne R. Henson & Loreen N. Olson Literature Review -Identity, identity management, and stigma have been investigated from a variety of communication perspectives CTI -Social roles and group memberships are also two branches of identity -Identity as communication -Social expectations and roles are internalized in the determination of identity, and identities are exacted through communication -Four key frames of identity construction – personal, relational, enacted, and communal -Personal -Individual’s self-concept and involves the character or personality of a person -Rational -Individuals often define their identities by their determined social roles in relationship to others and that relationships themselves may take on identities -Enacted -The performed self, or the presentation of identity when communicating with others -Communal -The identity of large-scale groups -Associated with one’s collective status -Can serve as a parameter for collective groupings -Identity located within individuals, relationships, communal groups and communicatively enacted in social relations -Both interdependent and mutually influential Identity, Stigma, and Communication -Communal discourse may label individuals as deviant and stigmatize individual behaviours -May perceive that their communal identity and enacted identity are very dissimilar – a gap emerges -Communal identity, because it relies on group norms and standards, leaves little room for individualization and serves as a basis for broad group judgments -Stigma is often socially constructed based on communal identity stereotypes rather than on an individual basis -Social constructions of stigma often result from societal-level discourses that are shaped by the ideologies of a given society -The concept of stigma can be applied to any condition that marks the bearer as “culturally unacceptable” -Goffman – stigmatizations serve to devalue particular individuals and groups in society and label the “other” as undesirable, unproductive, dangerous, and dysfunctional -Stigma represents a social construction that results from perceived threats to normative behaviours, social roles, and accepted identities -Internalization of negatively felt emotions -Managing a stigmatized identity becomes a difficult impression management process Communication and Stigma -Examined how communal discourse perpetuates negative identity attributes -Effects of stigma on interactions between stigmatized and non-stigmatized individuals -Stigmatized individuals are cautious in these types on interactions in light of stigmatizing discourse and how they attempt to manage by hiding or changing stigmatized behaviours -Identity management may have both positive and negative consequences for the individual -The discrepancies between one’s view of self and the communal discourse create the identity gap, wherein individuals have the discursive space to reframe stigmatized identities Stigma and Serial Killers -Deviance is not recognized as a social construction -The label of deviance in communal discourse limits the choices of identity enactment -The preformed behaviour of the serial killer is exactly what caused the stigma – once labeled deviant, that person becomes and remains outside of the normal society -Deviance becomes a master-status identifier -Limited social resources Method -Focus on those life experiences that radically alter and shape the meanings persons give to themselves and their experiences -Set aside his or her own experiences and prejudgments of the phenomenon under study – bracket Data Collection Procedures -3 months of collection -Interview data -All relevant interviews must -Include the serial killer discussing his actions and interactions with others -Come from credible sources -Be only with male serial killers -Discussion of the crime, reasons for committing the crime, and reflections on societal depictions of serial killers -13 serial killers from diverse backgrounds, varied in the number of individuals killed, and were interviewed at different stages of their criminal proceedings Data Analysis -Constant comparative method to identify themes that represented recurring patterns of behaviour -Iterative process of reduction -Constant use of method to refine categories Results The Discursive Management of a Deviant Identity -Managed their identities by representing a normal self to others, acknowledging barriers to normalcy, and explaining their actions as justifiable Representations of a Normal Self -Managed dual-enacted identities -Engaged in service to society while also acknowledging they had a very dark, secret self -Alternate between differing portrayals of identity -The normal part of their selves was played out by many of the participants who became well-respected members of their communities -Tension between their ability to appear normal and the deviance they pursued – identity gap Barriers to Normalcy -The enactment of a normal identity as impossible at every moment due to barriers that inhibited normalcy -Could not control their secret, deviant selves -Biological imperative, emotional detachment, demonic possession, and sexual arousal Biological Imperative -Biological defect that prevented the normal experience of remorse or an awareness of the severity of their actions -The disease that prevents normalcy -Deviancy was not intentional, but the result of an uncontrollable chemical in the brain – Shawcross Emotional Detachment -Sense of paralysis and an inability to experience normal emotional -Antisocial personality -Knew that they should feel something because it was the “normal” thing to do -Disassociation from the event -Emotional detachment was used to mitigate the enjoyment of killing Demonic Possession -Adherence to non-normative religiosity, in general, and Satanism, more specifically -The enactment of deviance through demonic possession and Satanism alleviated guilt for killing because the men suggest that the devil made them do it Sexual Arousal -They had sexual motivations that involved violent fantasies of death and arousal -Deviant sexuality was expressed as an uncontrollable guiding force that motivated homicide Vigilante Justice -Justify their actions in comparison to what they perceived was the equally horrendous behaviour of their victims -Men rejected the deviancy of their actions by representing their behaviour as a justified, conscious choice and, therefore, normal -Serial killers account for one third of all prostitute killings -Others put blame directly on the victims’ actions leading up to their death -These justifications became ways in which the serial killers were able to communicatively make sense of their actions and also to appear normal -Reject the deviancy of their actions Social Influences on the Management of Deviant Identity -Several serial killers in this analysis expressed how social influences helped shape their deviant identities Previous Traumatic Experiences -Suffering through the depression and being powerless to change the circumstances of poverty -Military experience -Living a life of crime alongside parents -Previous traumatic experiences were explained as instigations to commit murder -Unstable familial relationships, family socioeconomic problems, and military experience (De)mythologizing the Iconic Serial Killer -The killers’ attempts to compare themselves to the iconic serial killer and to provide “expert” commentary on killing that often refuted mediated portrayals -Two archetypes ** -The psychotic loner -The embodiment of evil -Popular notions of killing methods are false – the superhuman strength of the serial killer was constructed as a false portrayal -Two techniques utilized by the participants included refining the definition of serial killing and bringing the realism to the methods they employ Discussion -Men in this study managed the gap between the deviant identity of serial killer with other enacted or personal identities in several ways -Articulated their inability to experience life normally due to personality or psychological problems -Attempted to alleviate the gap by expressing how their actions actually served society -They talked ba
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