Chapter 6 Deviance and Crime
Chapter Outline • What Is Deviance? • Functionalist Perspectives on Deviance • Conflict Perspectives on Deviance • Symbolic Interactionist Perspectives on Deviance • Postmodernist Perspectives on Deviance
Chapter Outline • Crime Classifications and Statistics • The Criminal Justice System • Deviance and Crime in the U.S. in the Future • The Global Criminal Economy
Deviance • Any behavior, belief, or condition that violates social norms in the society or group in which it occurs: • drinking too much • robbing a bank • laughing at a funeral
What Is Social Control? • Practices that social groups develop to encourage conformity to norms, rules, and laws and to discourage deviance.
What Is Social Control? • Internal social control takes place when individuals internalize norms and values and follow those norms and values in their lives. • External social control involves negative sanctions that proscribe certain behaviors and punish rule breakers.
Functionalist Perspective Deviance serves three functions: • Deviance clarifies rules. • Deviance unites a group. • Deviance promotes social change.
Opportunity Theory • Sociologists Richard Cloward and Lloyd Ohlin (1960) suggested that for deviance to occur, people must have access illegitimate opportunity structures: • Circumstances that provide an opportunity for people to acquire through illegitimate activities what they cannot achieve through legitimate channels.
Differential Association Theory Perspectives • States that people have a greater tendency to deviate from societal norms when they frequently associate with individuals who are more favorable toward deviance than conformity. • From this approach, criminal behavior is learned within intimate personal groups such as one’s family and peer groups
Differential ReinforcementTheory • Criminologist Ronald Akers (1998) combined differential association theory with elements of psychological learning theory to create differential reinforcement theory. • If a person’s friends and groups define deviant behavior as “right,” they are more likely to engage in deviant behavior. • If a person’s friends and groups define deviant behavior as “wrong,” the person is less likely to engage in that behavior.
Social Bond Theory • The probability of deviant behavior increases when a person’s ties to society are weakened or broken. • According to Hirschi, social bonding consists of • attachment to other people • commitment to conformity • involvement in conventional activities • belief in the legitimacy of conventional norms.
Labeling Theory • States that deviance is a socially constructed process in which social control agencies designate certain people as deviants, and they, in turn, accept the label and begin to act accordingly. • Focuses on the variety of symbolic labels that people are given in their interactions with others. • The act of fixing a person with a negative identity, such as “criminal” is directly related to the power of those who do the labeling and those being labeled.
Stages in the Labeling Process • If individuals accept a negative label, they are more likely to continue to participate in the type of behavior the label was initially meant to control. • Secondary deviance occurs when a person who has been labeled a deviant accepts the identity and continues the deviant behavior. • Tertiary deviance occurs when a person who has been labeled a deviant seeks to normalize the behavior by relabeling it as nondeviant.
How the Law Classifies Crime • Crimes are divided into felonies and misdemeanors. • A felony is a serious crime such as rape, homicide, or aggravated assault, for which punishment typically ranges from more than a year’s imprisonment to death. • A misdemeanor is a minor crime typically punished by less than one year in jail.
How Sociologists Classify Crime • Sociologists categorize crimes based on how they are committed and how society views the offenses: • conventional (street) crime • occupational (white-collar) and corporate crime • organized crime • political crime
Functions of Punishment • Retribution • The punishment should fit the crime. • Social protection • Restrict offenders so they can’t commit further crimes.
Functions of Punishment • Rehabilitation • Return offenders to the community as law-abiding citizens. • Deterrence • Reduce criminal activity through a fear of punishment.
Global crime • The 1994 United Nations Conference on Global Organized Crime estimated that about $500 billion per year is accrued in the global trade in drugs alone. • Today, profits from all kinds of global criminal activities are estimated to range from $750 billion to more than $1.5 trillion a year.
Reducing Global Crime • Requires a global response, including: • Cooperation of law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and intelligence services across geopolitical boundaries. • Regulation by the international community to control international money laundering and trafficking in people and controlled substances such as drugs and weapons.