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SOC212H1 (55)
Chapter 9

Chapter 9

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Nathan Innocente

CHAPTER 9 Subculture and Social Learning Theories of DevianceIntroductionThis chapter examines subculture theories which explain deviance as behaviour or ideas that are produced in subcultures and transmitted by learningSUBCULTURESTyler defines culture as that complex whole which includes knowledge belief art morals law custom and many and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society Essentially culture is the composite of our learned ways of thinking and behaving Whether they result from a collective resolution of strain are simply a product of differential history or are defensive formations subcultures often involve values and norms outlined below that are deviant from the perspective of the wider culture oArgotthe subculture is frequently characterized by the use of an insider language The invention of words unique to the group is both a sign of insider status and a way of keeping unfriendly outsiders from knowing the groups business oVocabularies of Motivethe subculture may include justification and excuses for behaviour that serve to neutralize the demands of the dominant culture Distinctive clothing and body language often mark subculturesSubcultures may be characterized by beliefs and norms that diverge from the mainstream But as in the mainstream considerable variations may exist within a particular subculture Subcultures are developed through repeated contacts and maintained in mutually supporting networks It is difficult to cure a deviant whose deviance derives from participation in a subcultural group since the punishment will most likely make the deviant even more dependent on the group for the satisfaction of physical material and psychological needs BLAMING SUBCULTURESEthnic and Racial Subcultures Stereotypes exaggerate cultural differences and treat whole groups as deviantIn each case the stereotypes are poor representations of the real behaviour of most members of the group Furthermore such stereotypes divert attention from the wrongdoings of people who are not part of the targeted group and make it harder for those who have been targeted to obtain a fair hearing Youth SubculturesIt is difficult to write accurately about youth subcultures One of the objectives of most of them is to be impenetrable to outsiders especially if
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