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Explain the nature of deviance and describe its most common forms.
- Any behavior, belief, or condition that violates social norms in the society or the group in which it occurs:
- 1) drinking too much
- 2) robbing a bank
- 3) laughing at a funeral
- An act becomes deviant when it is socially defined as deviant.
- Definitions vary widely depending on the place, the time, the group.
- Deviant behavior ranges from mild transgressions of folkways, to serious infringements of mores, to violations of the law.
Describe the types of behavior included in conventional crimes.
- 1) Violent crime - actions involving force or the threat of force, including murder, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.
- 2) Property crimes - robbery, burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft, and arson.
- "Morals" crimes - prostitution, illegal gambling, use of illegal drugs, and illegal pornography.
Define the criminal justice system.
- 1) Refers to more than 55,000 local, state, and federal agencies that enforce laws, adjudicate crimes, and treat and rehabilitate criminals.
- 2) Includes police, courts, corrections facilities, and employs more than 2 million people in 17,000 police agencies, nearly 17,000 courts, more than 8,000 prosecutorial agencies, about 6,000 correctional institutions, and more than 3,500 probation and parole departments.
Describe the underground economy and the ways it enables criminal networks.
Discuss the concept of global crime, including the major types of global crime.
- The networking of powerful criminal organizations and their associates in shared activities around the world - is a relatively new phenomenon.
- It is an extremely lucrative endeavor as criminal organizations have increasingly set up their operations on a transnational basis, using the latest communication and transportation technologies.
- The highest income-producing activities global criminal organizations include trafficking in drugs, weapons, and nuclear material; smuggling of things and people (including many migrants); trafficking in women and children for sex industry; and trafficking in body parts such as corneas and major organs for the medical industry.
Discuss the functions of deviance from a functionalist perspective and outline the principal features of strain, opportunity, and control theories.
- According to functionalists, a certain amount of deviance contributes to the smooth functioning of society.
- Strain theory focuses on the idea that when people are denied legitimate access to cultural goals, such as a good job or a nice home, they engage in illegal behavior to obtain them.
- Opportunity theory suggests that for deviance to occur, people must have access to illegitimate means to acquire what they want but cannot obtain through legitimate means.
Discuss conflict perspectives on deviance.
Conflict perspective on deviance focus on inequalities in society. Marxist conflict theorists link deviance and crime to the capitalist society, which divides people in to haves and have-nots, leaving crime as the only source of support for those at the bottom of the economic ladder.
Identify and distinguish the three varieties of feminist approaches to deviance and crime.
- Feminist approaches to deviance focus on the relationship between gender and deviance.
- Liberal feminist approach - women's deviance and crime are a rational response to gender discrimination that women experience in families and the workplace. From this view, lower-income and minority women typically have fewer opportunities not only for education and good jobs but also for "high-end" criminal endeavors.
- Radical feminist approach views the cause of women's crime as originating in patriarchy (male domination over females). This approach focuses on social forces that shape women's lives and experiences and shows how exploitation may trigger deviant behavior and criminal activites.
- Marxist (socialist) feminist approach - is based on the assumption that women are exploited by both capitalism and patriarchy. From this approach, women�s criminal behavior is linked to gender conflict created by the economic and social struggles that often take place in postindustrial societies such as ours.
Distinguish between legal and sociological classifications of crime.
- Law - Crimes are divided into felonies and misdemeanors. A felony is a serious crime such as rape, homicide, or aggravated assault, for which punishment ranges from more than a year's imprisonment to death. A misdemeanor is a minor crime that is typically punished by less than one year in jail.
- Sociologists - Categorize crimes based on how they are committed and how society views the offenses:
- 1. Conventional (street) crime
- 2. Occupational (white-collar) and corporate crime
- 3. Organized crime
- 4. Political crime
Differentiate between occupational and corporate crime and explain "criminals."
- Occupational (white-collar) crime - illegal activities committed by people in their occupation or financial affairs.
- Corporate crime - illegal acts committed by corporate employees on behalf of the corporation and with its support. = Examples: antitrust violations; tax evasion; misrepresentations in advertising; infringements on patents, copyrights, and trademarks; price fixing; and financial fraud.
Describe organized crime and political crime and explain how each may weaken social control in a society.
- Organized - A business operation that supplies illegal goods and services for profit. Premeditated, continuous illegal activities that include drug trafficking, prostitution, loan-sharking, money laundering, and large-scale theft such as truck hijackings. Thrives because there is great demand for illegal goods and services.
- Political - Illegal or unethical acts involving usurpation of power by government officials. Illegal/ unethical acts perpetrated against the government by outsiders seeking to make a political statement, or undermine or overthrow the government.
- Corporate crimes are often more costly in terms of money and lives lost than street crimes. Other costs in clued the effect on the moral climate of society - confidence of everyday people in the nation�s economy had been shaken badly by the greedy and illegal behavior of corporate insiders.
Describe the key components of differential association theory, differential reinforcement theory, social control theory, rational choice theory, and labeling theory.
- Differential association theory - Individuals have a greater tendency to deviate from societal norms when they frequently associate with persons who promote or condone deviance. Criminal activity is more likely to occur when a person has frequent, intense, and long-lasting interactions with others who violate the law. Family and peer groups play a significant role in teaching/promoting criminal behavior.
- Differential reinforcement theory - Both deviant and conventional behaviors are learned through the same social processes. Pressure to conform to the values and beliefs of significant others plays a prominent role in the adoption of both deviant and conventional behaviors
Explain how police, courts, and prisons practice considerable discretion in deal with offenders.
State the four functions of punishment and explain how disparate treatment of the poor, all people of color, and white women is evident in the U.S. prison system.
Explain why official crime statistics may not be an accurate reflection of actual crime.
Any behavior, belief, or condition that violates significant cultural norms in the society or group in which it occurs.
Behavior that violates criminal law and its punishable with fines, jail terms, and other sanctions.
A violation of law or the commission of status offense by young people.
Systematic practices developed by social groups to encourage conformity to norms, rules, and laws and to discourage deviance.
The systematic study of crime and the criminal justice system, including the police, courts, and prisons.
The proposition that people feel strain when they are exposed to cultural goals that they are unable to obtain because they do not have access to culturally approved means of achieving those goals.
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
The proposition that individuals have a greater tendency to deviate from societal norms when they frequently associate with persons who are more favorable toward deviance than conformity.
Rational Choice Theory of Deviance
The belief that deviant behavior occurs when a person weighs the costs and benefits of nonconventional or criminal behavior and determines that the benefits will outweigh the risks involved is such actions.
Social Bond Theory
The proposition that the probability of deviant behavior increases when a person�s ties to society are weakened or broken.
The proposition that deviants are those people who have been successfully labeled as such by others.
The initial act of rule-breaking.
The process that occurs when a person who has been labeled a deviant accepts that new identity and continues the deviant behavior.
Deviance that occurs when a person who has been labeled a deviant seeks to normalized the behavior by relabeling it as nondeviant.
Actions - murder, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault - involving force or the threat of force against others.
Crimes including burglary (breaking into private property to commit a serious crime), motor vehicle theft, larceny-theft (theft of property worth $50 or more), and arson.
Crimes that involve a willing exchange of illegal goods or services among adults.
Occupational (White-Collar) Crime
Illegal activities committed by people in the course of their employment or financial affairs.
Illegal acts committed by corporate employees on behalf of the corporation and with its support.
A business operation that supplies illegal goods and services for profit.
Illegal or unethical acts involving the usurpation of power by government officials, or illegal/unethical acts perpetrated against the government by outsiders seeking to make a political statement, undermine the government, or overthrow it.
The calculated unlawful use of physical force or threats of violence against a persons or property in order to intimidate or coerce a government, organization, or individual for the purpose of gaining some political, religious, economic, or social objective.
Any action designed to deprive a person of things of value (including liberty) because of some offense the person is thought to have committed.