Getting the Measure of Crime Essay

Getting the Measure of Crime Essay

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Getting the Measure of Crime
What practical problems does the criminologist face in going about his

What does an informed examination of hidden crime tell us about (1)
official criminal statistics and (2) The nature of social order?

Are there such things as victimless crimes? Why?

In my essay I will first talk about crime and what it means, I will
then talk about what different methods criminologists use to collect
crime such as crime surveys and self report studies and there positive
and negative sides. I will then go on to talk about victimless crimes.

The definition of crime is something that is punishable by the
criminal justice system, and is “An act punishable by law, as being
forbidden by statute or injurious to the public welfare… an evil or
injurious act, an offence, a sin.” (Robert.R 2002)

The Dark figure of crime is the amount of crime which is unreported or
unknown The total amount of crime in a community consists of crimes
which are known or recorded and the dark figure of crime.

Criminologists have used differing methods (like victimization
surveys) to try to decrease the amount of unknown or unrecorded crime.

In many cases, a crime will either be unrecorded or unreported. Such
crimes remain anonymous and so would not be counted in statistical
data relating to crime. ‘The dark figure of crime’ is the term used to
describe this. Criminologists have attempted to analyse and attempt to
assess the size of the so-called dark figure of crime. The only way
thus far has been to estimate or guess the figure, but the estimated
figures differ between criminologists, although they all agr...

... middle of paper ...

figure, this could be due to people including things which they
believe is a crime when its not. People have different perceptions of
the word crime which can sometimes cause a problem, and can also cause
this figure to be inaccurate.


Ÿ Ethnographic research (2001) ethnographic research, available from (accessed 30/03/05)

Ÿ Goetcherian.L,(2005) Methods, getting the measure of crime,
Middlesex university.

Ÿ ICR (2005) institution for creation research, available from (accessed 30/03/05)

Ÿ Robert, R.(2002) ‘crime statistics’ Maguire, M, Morgan. R, Reiner. R
(3rd Ed) Oxford Handbook of Criminology, Oxford, Oxford University

Ÿ Williams. K (2001) Criminology, (4th ed) Oxford time press, Oxford.

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