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Criminology - Essay Example

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Name Institution CRITICALLY EVALUATE ONE OF THE GROUPS OF THEORIES, WHICH SEEK TO ENHANCE OUR UNDERSTANDING OF CRIME AND WHICH ARE THEMSELVES FOCUSED UPON EITHER: SOCIOLOGICAL EXPLANATIONS Human race has had reasons for crime causation since the early days of man’s existence…
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Criminology

Download file to see previous pages... However, more recent theories seek to front crime as caused by a multiplicity of causes, most of them inherent in the larger society. As per Croall (9), there is no one way of looking at crime in society that can fully explain why crime usually takes place. More so, Croall asserts that “there is no clear cut history of which have predominated in distinct periods although some have more resonance at particular historical moment” Sociological theories explain crime as caused by disconnect within society and/or lack of core tenets of moral living. The major sub-theories within sociological explanation of crime include strain theory, labeling theory, control theory, social theory, and critical theories. All these sociological theories tend to explain crime in the context of the social environment that essentially includes the family, work places, the school, and other areas of the community that people tend to live in and interact. The only way that these theories seem to differ is in the way they focus on different aspects of the social environment occupied. While some focus on individual differences in crime, others tend to look at crime as a larger end-product of group differences in society. They later try to look at distinction in criminal activities in distinct communities so as to explain the causes inherent in the neighborhood with a higher crime rate that are absent or minimal in the areas with lower crime rates. A new frontier in crime causation, however, seeks to combine a number of the above theories, thus creating integrated theories. According to Arrigo (17), this theory, in essence, shows a link between several of the sociological causes giving rise to crime causation. Sociological theorists, however, portray crime as result of the social environment within which individuals correlate with others. This is shown clearly in the sub-theories of sociological theory as evident below. Strain Theory Strain theory as sociological theory of crime causation explains crime as a product of the pressure imposed on individuals or groups in order to achieve certain goals. When people become upset, they might take part in criminal activities to offload their stress. In addition, they might take such step in order to try to free themselves from the strain they are going through. For instance, if other people constantly bully someone, he/she might take it off on a weaker target, or one might resort to theft to reduce financial pressures (Goode & Yehuda, 1994 p 97). An earlier proponent of the strain theory was Robert K. Merton who came up with a paradigm where crime causation is explained as occurring or taking place due to a blockade between institutional means of achieving cultural goals. Merton further elaborates the institutionalized means as education leading to a good job while the cultural goals are money, family, and a status in society. Robert K. Merton deviance typology Merton came up with the typology to show the various relationships between institutionalized means and culturally accepted goals. The first group, according to Merton (1968), is that of those who accept both the institutionalized means and the culturally accepted goals. They are the conformists who struggle to attain the goals by following the means prescribed by society. The second group is that of the innovators. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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