SOC 2700 Chapter Notes - Chapter 1: Labeling Theory, False Advertising, Public-Order Crime

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Chapter 1
Crime and Criminology
Criminal justice system is the stages through which the offender passes, including police, courts and
corrections
Intimate violence is crime that occurs in the context of familiarity, such as spousal abuse, child abuse or
elder abuse
People do rely on their experience when assessing the likelihood of being a victim of crime, but rather draw
from such sources like the media
Third knowledge of crime has long term effects creating fear of crime, a negative view of the police and the
courts and attitude favoring harsher punishments for offenders
Criminology is the scientific study of the nature, extent, cause and control of criminal behaviour
Criminologist is one who brings objectivity and method to the study of crime and its consequences
What is Criminology?
Scientific method is very important in criminology
Criminologist use objective research to gather data, create theories and test the validity of those cases
They use every method of established social science inquiry: analysis of existing records, experimental
designs, surveys, historical analysis and content analysis
Criminology and Criminal Justice
Criminologists explain the origin, extent and nature of crime in society, whereas the criminal justice
scholars describe and analyze the work of the police, courts and correctional facilities, and how to better
design effective methods of crime control
Criminologists must be aware of how the agencies of criminal justice operate, and criminal justice experts
design programs of crime prevention or rehabilitation through their understanding of the nature of the
crime
Criminology and Deviance
Deviant behaviour is behaviour that departs from or doesn’t conform to social norms, but isn’t defines as
a crime by the law
Crime and deviance are often confused yet not all crimes are deviant or unusual acts and not all deviant
acts and illegal or criminal
Many deviant act and not even criminal even though they may shocking, for example if you see someone
drowning you don’t have to save them and it wont be considered a crime
The relationship between crime and deviance is depicted along three different dimensions: the evaluation
or social harm, the level of agreement about the norm and the severity of societal response
Two issues of interest to criminologists is
1. How do deviant behaviours become crimes?
2. When should acts considered crimes be legalized
Decriminalization the reducing of penalty for a criminal act, and its illegality
A Brief History of Criminology
The studying of crime and criminality is quite recent
During the middle ages, people who violated social or religious norms or practices were believed to be
witches or posses demons and the way to deal with them was to burn them at the stake
Classical Criminology
Utilitarianism is a view that punishment should be balanced and fair, and that crime is a rational choice
Cesare Beccaria who was an Italian aristocrat believed that people want to achieve pleasure and avoid pain,
so if crime provides pleasure to the criminal, pain must be used to prevent the crime
Classical criminology is defines as the perspective that people freely choose crime, and it can be reduced
through threat of criminal sanctions
Classical criminology can be characterized by a few basic elements:
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1. People will freely choose criminal and unlawful solutions to meet needs or settle problems
2. Criminal choices may be more attractive because they use less work and have a greater payoff
3. Peoples choice of criminal solutions may be controlled by fear of punishment
4. If punishment are sever, certain and swift they will control criminal behavior
19th Century Positivism
Positivism is a branch of social science that sees behavior as a product of social, biological, psychological
and economic forces
Positivism has two basic elements, the first is the belief that human behaviour is a function of external
forces that are beyond individual control… some forces include wealth and class
The second aspect of positivism is its use of the scientific method to solve problems
Positivist criminology
Phrenologists believed that external cranial characteristics dictate which areas of the brain control physical
activity
By the early 19th century abnormality in the human mind was being linked to criminal behavior patterns
Manie san delire means mania without delusion
Cesare Lombroso and the Criminal Man
Cesare studied the cadavers executed criminals to scientifically determine whether law violators were
physicals different from people of conventional values and behaviours
Lombroso believed that offenders are born criminals who engage in repeated assault or theft related
activities because they have inherited criminal traits that impel them into a life of crime
Criminal anthropology is the early effort to discover a biological basis to crime through physical
measurements usually associated with Cesare Lombroso
Atavistic anomalies are the physical characteristics of born criminals that indicate they are throwbacks to
primitive people
Criminals supposedly had strong jaws and strong canine teeth common to carnivores who devour flesh
Lomboroso also compared criminal behavior with that of people with mental illnesses and those who had
certain forms of epilepsy
He concluded that criminogenic traits could be acquired through indirect heredity: from degenerate family
with frequent cases of insanity, deafness, syphilis, epilepsy and alcoholism amongst its members
The development of social criminology
L.A.J Quetelet
A Belgian mathematicians who began what is known as a cartographic school of criminology
Was one of the first social scientists to use objective mathematical techniques to investigate the influence of
social factors such as season, climate, sex and ae
His most important finding was that social forces were significantly connected with crime rates and that
the same law like mechanical regularity observed in the heavens and in nature near of social criminology
Emile Durkhiem
One of the founders of sociology and a significant contributor to criminology
According to him crime is normal because it has existed in every age, in both poverty and prosperity
It is virtually impossible to imagine a society without criminal behavior
Because people are so different from one another and need their various needs met some will resort to
criminal acts
Emile argued that crime could be useful and even healthy for a society because the existence of crime
implies that a way is pen for social change and that the social structure is not rigid or inflexible
If crime didn’t exist it would mean that everyone would act the same way and would totally agree on what
is right and wrong
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Document Summary

Criminal justice system is the stages through which the offender passes, including police, courts and corrections. Intimate violence is crime that occurs in the context of familiarity, such as spousal abuse, child abuse or elder abuse. People do rely on their experience when assessing the likelihood of being a victim of crime, but rather draw from such sources like the media. Third knowledge of crime has long term effects creating fear of crime, a negative view of the police and the courts and attitude favoring harsher punishments for offenders. Criminology is the scientific study of the nature, extent, cause and control of criminal behaviour. Criminologist is one who brings objectivity and method to the study of crime and its consequences. Scientific method is very important in criminology. Criminologist use objective research to gather data, create theories and test the validity of those cases.

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