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Political Sociology of Crime and Disorder - Essay Example

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The Evolution of Crime and Punishment Introduction A wild boar when placed in a cage will resist violently and will dare sneak past the iron bars of its prison. When left alone, the wild boar will forbear and will stand to defy its confinement. After a time, it will appear subdued…
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Political Sociology of Crime and Disorder
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Download file to see previous pages The dog will endure and his brute spirit will prevail. This is after all, the base tendencies of all living creatures. Termed as ‘Social Darwinism,’ every living organism is expected to exercise every means to survive and this struggle to subsist is as intense as every living being’s desire to adapt (Bannister, 1989). As a sociological concept, human beings by large operate under a specific need to survive (Leonard, 2009). To ascertain that such be satisfied, natural instinct, sometimes deemed as ‘animal instinct,’ becomes the key stimulus (Leonard, 2009). That is, in principle, Social Darwinism is paramount to the notion brought about by the phrase ‘survival of the fittest’ (Bannister, 1989). This means that all living organisms have a common basic instinct to fight for their continued existence amidst the competition and the relative imposition of the circumstances around them. This then creates a seemingly chaotic environment as a great number of living creatures battle each other for survival. Konrad Zacharias Lorenz, an Austrian Nobel Prize winner in Medicine, endeavored to analyze this instinctive behaviour of animals by studying graylag geese and jackdaws (Bannister, 1989). ...
That is, in a place where every inhabitant seeks to gain relative advantage over the rest, endless struggle and eternal conflict would invariably reign. Stated precisely, when hoards of people are placed in a single habitat and they are all naturally inclined to protect their own, what happens when they all strive to attain a common object? Since self-preservation is a prime characteristic, what happens when civilizations all struggle towards it? What happens then when this base instinct prevails in the human realm absent any boundaries to set limitations in conduct and behaviour? What happens when this need to survive overcomes cultural mores, norms and morality? Crime happens – crime, and in a civilized society, its concomitant punishment. Crime as a Sociological Concept Richard Quinney, an American sociologist, defined crime in his work entitled, “The Social Reality of Crime,” as a social phenomenon that is largely influenced by the manner by which societal systemic processes are designed and executed (Schaefer, 2008). That is, Quinney is of the belief that there exists a direct and fundamental causal relationship between the society and the prevalence of crime as the breach of enacted laws and policies aimed at exacting obedience from a group of recognized constituency enforced by a governmental agency (Quinney, 1966). Furthermore, the conscious, voluntary and illegal infringement of the law is believed to merit the attendant imposition of penalties and established rules of punishment and sentencing as an abnormal incident in an otherwise structured system (Quinney, 1966). Crime has been more aptly defined by Glanville Williams, a prominent Welsh legal scholar, as an act or omission falling well-within the limits set forth ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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