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SOC209H5 (126)
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SOC209 Readings.docx

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Department
Sociology
Course
SOC209H5
Professor
nikolayschitov
Semester
Winter

Description
Jan.10.2013 Kramar  Karla Homolka 12 year sentence for killing young women with Adam Bernado was released 2005  Robert Pickton 26 counts of murder of young girls, received 6 life sentences  Media plays a role in how we form opinions on crime  Wider forces shape the severity of punishment, judges decisions etc.  Crime is a culpable action or omission prohibited by law and punished by the state formal definition o An act or omission is a crime because the law defines it that way  Crime as conduct that violates cultural norms normative definition o When prevailing standards of conduct, or norms, are violated, the government responds with sanctions o More dependent on political, cultural and historical factors and is alternated based on certain aspects  Crime causes harm, which interferes with happiness, freedom etc.  Debate on whether sexual practices should be criminalized o In history some acts like bondage have been o No harm, is consensual  More a pattern of ideas or behaviours deemed as harmful and criminal  Canada first criminal code in 1892 based on the English one  Indian Act criminalized Aboriginal practices such as Potlatch till 1951 amendment o Residential schools with Christian education o 1876 reserves set up and a register with gender discrimination  Anti Chinese laws in early 1900s o Cannot employ white women o Less access to less expensive labour, unfair economic advantage to non-Chinese  Administrative criminology is that branch which seeks to inform the management and control of crime and criminals through policy-oriented research. o Enhance management of population (mostly for economy)  Academic criminology causes of crime  Popular culture dominates the manner in which crime is handled  Erik Erikson representations of crime/violence show deeper societal and cultural concerns  Focus on theft, interpersonal crime rather than corporate crime o Based on popular portrayal and lack of pursing  Moral regulation certain types of morality is implemented in social regulation o Agents acts in self regulation Jan.17.2013 Chambliss  Upper middle class boys (Saints) and lower class boys (Roughnecks) attending Hanibal High school o Saints regarded as good boys who occasionally got into trouble o Roughnecks had run-ins with the law o Both were equal in delinquency o Difference in the way they were treated  Saints o Saints would devise an elaborate plan to get them all out of classes, then drive across town and spend time in a bar, café o On weekends, they would get drunk and vandalize, pull pranks o Were not stopped by police o Mostly good at school, played on sport teams o Were considered ‘good boys’  Roughnecks o Known for petty theft, fighting and drinking o Did not own cars like the saints, had to borrow, limited where they could go o Police would sporadically harass the group, shared the same opinion about them as the community o Attended school more regularly, did not do well or poorly o Some of the members were on sports team o Considered ‘bad boys’  Roughnecks more prone to physical violence, Saints never fought but endangered the lives of others frequently  Saints had cars and could go places, community saw the Roughnecks more  Saints mostly straightened out, most Roughnecks did not Wacquant  Rethinking the race question in US prisons  Slavery as a root o Dehumanization of African Americans o Creation of inequality o Charged with offences (usually dealt with by masters) after emancipation  Jim Crow o Considered inferior to the Whites o Division of Whites and Blacks, forced into slum towns  Discouraged and afraid of mixing of blood  Ghetto o Entered the Fordist economy as cheap labour o Whites grudgingly accepted integration as principle, but not in practice o Ghetto as a prison  Forced into separate living places, cannot leave or might face prejudice  Triple exclusion o Denied access to cultural capital o Systematically excluded from social redistribution o Banned from political participation Jan.24.2013 Rafter  Crime films endorse certain explanation of crime  Exposes viewers to national debates about crime  Work on an ideological level feeding our assumptions that crime can be explained and we are qualified to explain it, feeding the crime problem (overrepresentation)  Digs on levels that show calm nature of offenders, their behaviour is based on childhood trauma  Crime films reflected criminological theories of the day o 1940s-50s based on Freud’s theory many films were based on offenders that were morally twisted  Most successful films were one step ahead of popular opinion  Explanations o Biological born bad (eg. Texas chainsaw massacre, family of predisposed murders) o Environmental made bad (eg. Badlands, little can be done to escape life situations, environment turned character into psycho killer) o Twisted psyche abnormal (eg. Psycho, Bates kills inn guests, has several personalities) o Aspirations and longing free will (eg. The Mailman always rings twice, portrayed sympathetically, each murder has a reason) o Alternative tradition and fallen world restores world to equilibrium (eg. Romeo is Bleeding, starts out taking bribes, wrecks life, waits for wife)  Movies don’t just tell a story, they show an ideological assumption of what is or is not right  Movies causing crime o Copycats portrayed in movies o Human behaviour is more complex and has many influences  Bridge between imagination and reality and social experience and its interpretation Richardson and Kennedy  The use of the term ‘gang’ from teens vandalizing to extortion by organized crime  Constant use has lead to it becoming an empty signifier, leaves room for ambiguity  The meaning should be contextualized in order to represent it properly Jan.31.2013 Snider  Role of power and class in enforcement and creation of laws against corporate crime  Corporate crime causes more deaths, more monetary damage  Corporate criminals can afford best lawyers to find loopholes o Prosecuting some of the criminals can also have political consequences  Handled under civil or administrative sector, less loss of face  Victims of corporate crime will likely not get compensation o Lawyers find too many loopholes o Police will not help o Gag order not allowed to publicly talk about issues and settlement details  Corporate power in shaping public policies and opinions  Corporate criminals are not labeled ‘criminals’ have excuses such as acts of god, not subjected to finger pointing  Corporate crime o Overpay CEOs and high level officials, while firing low level employees o Dumping toxic waste in lakes and expecting government to bailout and clean up  Decline in average life of Canadian, increase in wealth for the rich percent o Poor becoming poorer, suffering under tax burdens of rich  Levels of prosecution fallen, deregulation  Enron energy did not tell shareholders about debts, many people lost a lot of money  Savings and Loans (S&Ls) o Restricted investments to sole exception of a provision providing federal insurance to backstop S&L losses o Hot deals land flips, lending huge sums of money to business friends o Looting instead of using money people gave to invest, used as personal accounts o Falsifying records not providing accurate representations o Many not charged or sanctioned, 14% prosecuted o Those charged received light punishments  Even though corporate crime threatens to destroy many of the foundations of the system, deregulation allows elites to get away with it  Corporate criminals should be ‘excused’ because they are under a lot of pressure o Victims were told to blame themselves, they should have been less greedy or did their homework  Occupational safety o Decades of social movements to promote safer conditions o Resistance  Challenge of ownership employees have power over the employer  Contract rights barrier between owners and employees  No direct capital benefit  Environmental destruction for corporate gain  Corporate counterrevolution o Gains of corporate crime outweigh the costs o Cuts in welfare, social programs o Government’s obligation to help poor has diminished, obligation to punish the powerless reinforced Hannah-Moffat & Shaw  Creating choices 1990 o Set new principles and philosophy for the operation of 5 women prisons  Empowerment  The provision of meaningful choices  Treating women with respect and dignity  The provision of a physically and emotionally supportive environment  The sharing of responsibility for women's welfare between institutional staff, community members and the women themselves. o Advocated for new buildings, new ways of doing things  Separate housing for women with children etc. o About women in prison, the effect of prison penalties o Difficulties in the reforming of institutions, the role of prison in society, intersection of gender with race and class o Initial inspection of first women’s prison showed inferior conditions and recommendation of closure of P4W  Canada is one of the first to incorporate feminist principles  State intervention can make it worse for women o Contributes to the oppression of women rather than e
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