Crime prevention is based on implicitly one or more theoretical understandings of crime. The value of understanding theoretical explanations of crime is important because every theory assumes something different. There are also two types of theories of crime, which are crime as deviant behavior and crime as learned behavior. Crime as deviant behavior is implicit or explicit is most predictable studies. Personality differences that are reflected unimportant in the cultural approach to crime are considered relevant in most presumptions.
The assumption that understanding criminal behaviour is the most important tool we have to combat the incidence of crime has prompted many philosophers, jurists, psychologists, psychiatrists, socialists and others to seek a plausible explanation for the commission of crimes. Their methods are diverse, some employing scientific means and others using empirical evidence to explore why people engage in “deviant” activity. The most convincing of these theories are those which explain criminal behaviour by reference to the individual, such as the classical theory, which views criminal behaviour as being the free and rational choice of the individual. The theory then offers proportionate punishment as a means to discourage people from reoffending or to deter others from acting criminally. Whilst the theory is not without it flaws, it is difficult to disprove such a theory in the absence of establishing the offender was not capable of rational thought at the time of committing the offence.
This leads into the area of anomie and the work of Robert Merton. Durkheim argues that crime can have a positively beneficial role in social evolution. Individuals, who anticipate necessary adjustments of social morality to changing conditions, may be stigmatised as criminals at first. Despite Durkheim’s views, he does not explain why certain people are more likely to commit crimes than others are; he is more interested in the relationship between deviance and order in society. Along with Durkheim, Merton argues that deviant behaviour is functional.
Social control theory has become one of the more widely accepted explanations in the field of criminology in its attempt to account for rates in crime and deviant behavior. Unlike theories that seek to explain why people engage in deviant behavior, social control theories approach deviancy from a different direction, questioning why people refrain from violating established norms, rules, and moralities. The theory seeks to explain how the normative systems of rules and obligations in a given society serve to maintain a strong sense of social cohesion, order and conformity to widely accepted and established norms. Central to this theory is a perspective which predicts that deviant behavior is much more likely to emerge when social constraints and bonds between the individual and rest of society are either weak or simply not present. The bonds that discourage crime are strengthen through relationships between the individual and social institutions such as the family, schools, judicial/policing systems etc.
If an act that would violate an individual’s basic human rights has been committed it has more of a chance to be recognized as a crime by societies throughout the world than it would be with just a legal definition of crime. The legal definition of crime is a useful starting point for the study of crime if a criminologist wanted to study something more specific relating to crime. The module points out that each part of the legal definition of crime is important to look at in order to understand the nature of criminal law and the difficult task involved in attempting to determine what it takes for a specific act or omission to be defined as “criminal”. With different countries having different laws it would be hard for a criminologist to study something as broad as Racism The legal definition of crime would be more useful if a c... ... middle of paper ... ...t the survey produces to be inaccurate. The final method I would incorporate into the triangulation method of collecting data is historical data.
Interactionism is an incredibly important concept to help describe the complexities of criminal behavior. Not only does this theory determine our interactions with one another, but also applies a shared understanding amongst humans as to what behaviors are deemed deviant. This theory has three major tenets: Meaning, Language, and Thought (Wheldon, 2007). Each tenet explains the meaning about the creati... ... middle of paper ... ...er the individual can start to shed the current sex offender label and establish a society approved label. Conclusion The Symbolic Interaction Theory is a theory that can best explain why crime occurs.
The writer will describe and give examples of the three perspectives of viewing crimes. The perspectives that will be highlighted are the consensus view, the conflict view or the interactionist view. Each perspective maintain its own interpretation of what constitutes criminal activities and what causes people to engage in criminal behaviors (Siegel, p.12). The Consensus View of Crime describes that crimes are basically behaviors that are believed to be extremely distasteful or unacceptable, in many, if not all elements related to society. Substantive criminal law, which is the written code that defines crimes and their punishments, reflect mainstream society’s values, opinions beliefs (Siegel, p.12).
Who determines what actions are punishable and what actions are not? Also if the same act is committed in one society and is punishable, could it be committed in another society and not be punishable? Though there is a worldwide understanding of severe crime commitment and its punishments, including theft, murder, or abuse. I would like to convey a point through numerous examples and research that in many cases certain crimes are committed in good faith. Moreover this paper will also show the different theoretical justifications behind criminal acts.
The Contribution of the Labelling Theory to Our Understanding of Crime and Deviancy We can call a label, or define it as; a mark, name, or even badge. Something is only deviant, or becomes deviant because someone has been successful in labelling it as, deviancy is ambiguous, definitions differ from society to society or even culture to culture. Calling something deviant is a reaction to a type of behaviour. The labelling theory is very complex, it asks why some people committing crimes are named deviant but others are not. Labelling theorists believe when you label offenders as criminals, yobs, this has negative consequences, deepening and worsening the criminal behaviour.
A high in magnitude or severe stressor such as an unjust crime against you typically leads to the path of criminal activity. Criminal activity is also associated with low social control and minimal emotional bonds. Most criminals create some pressure or incentive for criminal coping. Some stress is easier to resolve through crime rather than a legal route. For