Textbook Notes (368,434)
Canada (161,878)
Sociology (1,112)
SOC 1500 (173)
Chapter 9

Sociology 1500-Chapter 9.docx

13 Pages
78 Views
Unlock Document

Department
Sociology
Course
SOC 1500
Professor
Andrew Hathaway
Semester
Winter

Description
Chapter 9 Review: Conflict theory: - To explain crime within economic and social contexts including seeing o View Crime as the outcome of class struggle o Reject the notion that law is designed to maintain a tranquil and fair society o The connections among class, crime, and control o How society creates criminogenic environments o How there is bias in the justice system o The relationship btwn capitalism and crime o Conflict theory:  Sees criminal behaviour as caused by economic inequality, and criminal law defined by those in power Marxist Thought: - Karl Marx o Early career as a journalist o Focussed on economic conditions under capitalism o Society is product of economic production  Productive forces  Technology, energy, resources  Productive relations  People producing the goods  Owner-worker, worker-worker o Class is a power relationship  Denotes position in relation to others Karl Marx (1818-1883) - Believed that societies change through slow evolution or sudden violence because of contradictions or conflicts present in a society - If social conflicts aren’t resolved they tend to destabilize society, leading to social change - “there must be something rotten in the very core of a social system which increases in wealth without diminishing its misery, and increases in crime even more than its numbers” Friedrich Engels (1820-1895) - Portrayed crime as a function of social demoralization o A collapse of people’s humanity reflecting a decline in society - The brutality of the capitalist system turns workers into animal-like creatures o Without a will of their own Developing a social conflict theory of crime - Willem bonger: o Crime causation was published in 1916 o Believed that crime was social lying within the boundaries of normal human behaviour o Society composed of ruling and inferior classes  Believed that it was divided unequally o Laws reflect interests of the dominant class o Capitalism encourages egoism and criminality by equating status with property o Punishment applies more to crimes of the poor o Economic inequality intensifies personal problems and crime o Upper class individuals will commit crime if:  They have an opportunity to gain an illegal advatage  Their lack of moral sense enables them to violate social rules - Ralf Dahrendorf: o Every society is based on the coercion of some of its members by others o Composed of two groups:  Those who possess authority and use it for social domination  Those who lack authority and are dominated o His model of conflict serves as a pillar of modern conflice criminology - George Vold: o Actually adapted the social conflict theory o “the whole political process of law-making, law-breaking and law enforcement becomes a direct reflection of deep-seated and fundamental conflicts btwn interest groups and their more general struggles for the control of the police power of the state” o Theorized that criminal acts are seen as a consequence of forces struggling to control society Modern Conflict theory: - Became prominent during the 1960s - Influenced by: o Self-report studies of delinquency  Controlling the lower-class o Labelling theories  Rejected the notion that crime is morally wrong and studied the interaction among crime o Research on inequality (racism, sexism) and injustice o Social, political upheavals of the 60s and 70s  Political demonstrations against the Vietnam War - Social reality of crime: o Quinney’s conflict theory about how power, society and criminality are interrelated Conflict Criminology: - Chambliss and Seidman o Law, Order and Power (1971)  The justice system protects rich and powerful by determining how:  Crimes are defined  Laws are enforced  Law-breakers punished Power Relations: - The unequal distribution of power produces conflict - Conflict is rooted in the competition for power o Power provides mean to influence public opinion for private gain  Shape public opinion to meet their personal interests o Those in power use law to criminalize those without power  Ex. Minority groups  Sentencing natives The social reality of crime: - Richard quinney (1970) o Crime is politically defined o Defined based on interests of powerful o The laws are enforced by the powerful o Table 9.1 o Behaviour is structured by class (power) o Stereotypes of crime are diffused by the media o Crime becomes a social reality o Criminal law represents the interests of those who hold power in society o Quinney wrote that criminal definitions are based on:  Changing social conditions  Emerging interests  Increasing demands the political, economic, and religious interests be protected  Changing conceptions of public interest Norm Resistance: - Austin Turk, Criminality and Legal order (1969) o Social conflict in inevitable when authorities in society are in conflict with those who are controlled by, but have little ability to control, the law o Authority relationships produces conflict because groups have own norms and behaviours o This results in norm resistance  Interactions btwn subjects and authorities - Norm resistance: o Refers to how interaction btwn authorities and subjects eventually produces open conflict btwn the two groups - Open conflict will occur if o Both groups are strongly committed to opposing cultural norms o There is group support for resistant to authority or change o Registers are not sophisticated about strengths and weaknesses of authorities Research on Conflict Theory: - Crimes of burglary and larceny are a means of social and economic survival - Area of interest o Comparison of fluctuations in rates of poverty and crime o Examination of cases in the criminal justice system for bias by class and race o Development of laws supporting powerful - Criticisms o Lack of empirical evidence o Crime in socialist countries o Both white and black offenders are more likely to receive stricter sentences in criminal courts if their personal characteristics give them an appearance of them being in a dangerous class o Natives are more likely to be denied bail, and subjected to pretrial detention and are guilty without knowing the consequences o Take action to a victim who is wealthy, white and male, but not-interested when it’s a female, non-white victim Research and analysis: - Support: o Crime rates and indicators of poverty o Police actions in low income areas o Racism in the justice system - Criticism: o Crime is a result of greed, not need o Little evidence of bias in sentencing o Crime is not lowered by socialism - Famous canadian court cases Marxist Criminolgy: Development of Radical criminology - Marxism is a critique of capitalism o Capitalism produces haves and have-nots, each engaging in a particular branch of criminality. - Those in political power also control the definition of crime - Britain, 1960s and 70s o The radical theory o Taylor, walton and young,The New criminology o Critique of conventional approaches to crime - University of California Scholars o Influenced by rights movements - 1980s and 90s o Left-realism, feminist and peacemaking criminologies Fundamentals of Marxist criminology: - Crime and criminal justice must be viewed in a historical, social and economic context - Criminals are not social misfits but rather a product of the society - Basic premise o Scholarship is not value-free, should have a political and ideological basis - Crime is a product of society (3 implications) o Each society will produce its own types and amounts of crime o Each society will have its own distinctive ways of dealing with criminal behaviour o Each society gets the type and amounts of crime than it deserves - Criminality is a function of the social and economic organization of society - To control crime and reduce criminality is to end the social conditions that promote crime Economic Structure and Surplus Value: - Surplus Value (fig 9.3) o The value of an item in excess of what was paid for producing it  Materials, overhead, and labour o Workers are exploited to produce higher profits (more surplus value) for owners, become marginalized and alienated  Downsizing, lowered wages, automation, contracting out - Marginalization results in weakened bond to society and increased crime o When people are pushed outside the economic mainstream - Surplus Value: o Labouring classes produce wealth that far exceeds their wages and goes to the capitalist class as profits - As surplus values increase, more people are displaced from productive relationships Intrumental Marxism: - View the criminal law and criminal justice system solely as an instrument for controlling the poor - Defines the state, the law, and the ruling class as a single entity - Government and law o Are tools of the capitalist o Run for the benefit of the rich o Key term: Privilege  Refers to the wealth and prestige enjoyed by some, which puts them in conflict with those less well off in society  Barry krisberg linked crime to privilege  Relates to the effective use of violence and coercion - The poor o May be driven to crime o Are more often the targets of enforcement o A natural frustration among the society - Conventional Scholarship o Reinforces stereotypes of the poor and crime - Criminology o Should ensure that people understand what is really going on
More Less

Related notes for SOC 1500

Log In


OR

Join OneClass

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

Sign up

Join to view


OR

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.


Submit