WDW205 Textbook Summary - Chapter 6

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Woodsworth College Courses
William Watson

Criminology WDW205H1 F October 3, 2010 Note Series 6 Chapter 6 Trait Theories Trait Theories- this approach looks at the combination of biological or psychological attributes that might explain criminality. Each offender is considered unique, physically and mentally; consequently, there must be a unique explanation for each persons behaviour Biological Trait Theory Somatype- an idea used in a system developed for categorizing people on the basis of their body build, associated with the work of William Sheldon Sociobiology- branch of science that views human behaviour as being motivated by inborn biological urges and desires. The urge to survive and reproduce motivates human behaviour Equipotentiality- view that all individuals are equal at birth and are thereafter influenced by their environment Instincts- the mechanism by which routine actions and behaviour are known automatically without learning Biological Theories of Crime Biochemical -major premise is that crime is a function of diet, vitamins, hormonal imbalances or food allergies Neurological -major premise is that delinquents often suffer brain impairment; attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and minimal brain dysfunction are related to antisocial behaviour Genetic -major premise is that criminal traits and predispositions are inherited; the criminality of parents can predict the delinquency of
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