criminology ch 1

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criminology ch 1
2011-08-22 16:57:48
Criminology vocab

Ch. 1, The Nature and Extent of Crime
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  1. actus reus
    • An illegal act.
    • The actus reus can be affirmative act, such as taking money or shooting someone, or a failure to act, such as failing to take proper precautions while driving a car.
  2. anomie
    A condition produced by normlessness. Because of rapidly shifting moral values, the individual has few guides to what is socially acceptable. According to Merton, anomie is a condition that occurs when personal goals cannot be achieved by available means. In Agnew's revision, anomie can occur when positive or valued stimuli are removed or negative or painful ones applied.
  3. arson
    The intentional or negligent burning of a home, structure, or vehicle for criminal purposes such as profit, revenge, fraud, or crime concealment.
  4. Assault
    An attack that may not involve physical contact; includes attenpted battery or intentionally frightening the victim by word or deed
  5. atavistic anomalies
    According to Lombroso, the physical charateristics that distinguish born criminals from the general population and we are throwbacks to animals to primitive people.
  6. battery
    A physical attack that includes hitting, punching, slapping, other offensice touching of a victim
  7. biological determinism
    A belief that crimogenic traits can be acquired throught indirect heredity from a degenerate family whose members suffered from such ills as insanity, syphilis, and alcoholism, or through indirect heredity-being related to a family of criminals.
  8. biosocial theory
    An approach to criminology that focuses on the interation between biological and social factors as they relate to crime.
  9. bourgeoisie
    In Marxist theory, the owners of the means of production; the capitalist of ruling class.
  10. burglary
    breaking into and entering a home or structure for the purposes of committing a felony.
  11. Cartographic school of criminology
    An approach developed in Europe in the early nineteenth century making use of social statistics to provide important demographic information on the population, including density, gender, religious affiliations, and wealth. Many of the relationships between crime and social phenomena identified then still serve as a basis for criminology today.
  12. Chicago School
    Group of urban sociologist who studied the relationship between environmental conditions and crime.
  13. classical criminology
    • The theoretical perspective
    • suggesting that
    • (1) people have free will to choose criminal or conventionalbehaviors;
    • (2) people choose to commit crime for reasons of greed or personal need; and
    • (3) crime can be controlled only by the fear of criminal sanctions
  14. Corde of Hammurabi
    The first written criminal code developed in Babylonia around 4,000 years ago.
  15. common law
    Early English law, developed by judges, that incorporated Anglo-Saxon tribal custom, feudal rules and practices, and the everyday rules of behavior of local villages. Common law became the standardized law of the land in England and eventually formed the basis of the criminal law in the United States.
  16. compurgation
    In early English law, a process whereby an accused person swore an oath of innocence while being backed up by a group of twelve to twenty-five "oathhelpers," who would attest to his character and claims of innocence.
  17. conflict view
    The view that human behavior is shaped by interpersonal conflict and that those who maintain social power will use it to further their own needs.
  18. consensus view
    The belief that the majority of citizens in a society share common ideals and work toward a common good and that crimes are acts that are outlawed because they conflict with the rules of the majority and are harmful to society.
  19. crime
    A violation of societal rules of behavior as interpreted and expressed by a criminal legal code created by people holding social and political power. Individuals who violate these rules are subject to sanctions by state authority, social stigma, and loss of status.
  20. crime typology
    The study of criminal behavior involving research on the links between different types of crime and criminals.Because people often disagree about types of crimes and criminal motivation, no standard exists within the field. Some typologies focus on the criminal, suggesting the existence of offender groups, such as professional criminals, psychotic criminals, occasional criminals, and so on. Others focus on the crimes, clustering them into categories such as property crimes, sex crimes, and so on.
  21. criminal anthropology
    Early efforts to discover a bilogical vasis of crime through measurement of physical and mental processes.
  22. criminal justice system
    the agencies of government-police, courts, and corrections- responsiblefor apprehending, adjudicationg, sanctioning, and treating criminal offenders.
  23. criminological enterprise
    The areas of study and research that taken together make up the field of criminology. Criminologists typically specialize in one of the subareas of criminology, such as victimology or the sociology of law.
  24. criminologists
    Researchers who use scientific methods to study the nature, extent, cause, and control of criminal behavior.
  25. decriminalized
    Reducing the penalty for a criminal act but not actually legalizing it.
  26. deviant behavior
    Behavior that departs from the social norm.
  27. ecological view
    A belief that social forces operating in urban areas create criminal interactions; some neighborhoods become natural areas for crime.
  28. felony
    A serious offense that carries a penalty of incarceration in a state prison, usually for one year or more. People convicted of felony offenses lose the right to vote, hold elective office, or maintain certain licenses.
  29. first-degree murder
    The killing of another person after premeditation and deliberation.
  30. interactionist view
    The view that one's perception of reality is significantly influenced by one's interpretations of the reactions of others to similar events and stimuli.
  31. interdisciplinary science
    Involving two or more academic fields.
  32. larceny
    Taking for one's own use the property of another, by means other than force or threats on the victim or forcibly breaking into a person's home or workplace; theft.
  33. legal code
    The specific laws that fall within the scope of criminal law.
  34. mala in se crimes
    Acts that are outlawed because they violate basic moral values, such as rape, murder, assault, and robbery.
  35. mala prohibitum crimes
    Acts that are outlawed because they clash with current norms and public opinion, such as tax, traffic, and drug laws.
  36. mens rea
    • "Guilty mind."
    • The mental element of a crime or the intent to commit a criminal act
  37. moral entrepreneurs
    Interest groups that attempt to control social life and the legal order in such a way as to promote their own personal set of moral values. People who use their influence to shape the legal process in ways they see fit.
  38. Mosaic Code
    The laws of the ancient Israelites, found in the Old Testament of the Judeo-Christian Bible.
  39. ordeal
    Based on the principle of divine intervention and then-prevalent belief that divine forces would not allow an innocent person to be harmed, this was a way of determining guilt involving such measures as having the accused place his or her hand in boiling water or hold a hot iron to see if God would intervene and heal the wounds. If he would healed, the person was found not guilty; conversely, if the wound did not heal, the accused was deemed guilty of the crime for which he or she was being punished.
  40. pedophile
    Sexual offenders who target children
  41. penology
    An aspect of criminology that overlaps with criminal justice; penology involves the correction and control of known criminal offenders.
  42. phrenologist
    A scientist who studied the shape of the skull and bumps on the head to determine whether these physical attributes are linked to criminal behavior; phrenologists believed that external cranial characteristics dictate which areas of the brain control physical activity.
  43. physiognomist
    A scientist who studied thefacial features of criminals to determine whether the shape of the ears, nose, and eyes and the distance between them are associated with antisocial behavior.
  44. positivism
    The branch of social science that uses the scientific method of the natural sciences and suggests that human behavior is a product of social, biological, psychological, or economic forces.
  45. precedent
    A rule derived from previous judicial decisions and applied to future cases; the basis of common law.
  46. proletariat
    A term used by Marx to refer to the working class members of society who produce goods and services but who do now own the means of production.
  47. psychopathic personality
    A personality characterized by a lack of warmth and feeling, inappropriate behavior responses, and an inability to learn from experience. Some psychologists view psychopathy as a result of childhood trauma; others see it as a result of biological abnormality.
  48. racial profiling
    Selecting suspects on the basis of their ethnic or racial background.
  49. rape
    Unlawful sexual intercourse with a female without her consent.
  50. robbery
    Taking or attempting to take something of value by force or threat of force and/or by putting the victim in fear.
  51. scientific method
    A systematic means of investigation involving observation to test scientific hypotheses that can then be used to construct valid theories.
  52. social control function
    The ability of society and its institutions to control, manage, restrain, or direct human behavior.
  53. social ecology
    Environmental forces that have a direct influence on human behavior.
  54. social harm
    A view that behaviors harmful to other people and society in general must be controlled. These acts are usually outlawed, but some acts that cause enormous amounts of social harm are perfectly legal, such as the consumption of tobacco and alcohol.
  55. socialization
    Process of human development and enculturation. Socialization is influenced by key social processes and institutions.
  56. socialization view
    One view is that people learn criminal attitudes from older, more experienced law violators. Another view is that crime occurs when children develop an inadequate self-image, which renders them incapable of controlling their own misbehavior. Both of these views link criminality to the failure of socialization, the interactions people have with the various individuals, organizations, institutions, and processes of society that help them mature and develop.
  57. stalking
    A pattern of behavior directed at a specific person that includes repeated physical or visual proximity, unwanted communications, and/or threats sufficient to cause fear in a reasonable person.
  58. statutory crimes
    Crimes defined by legislative bodies in response to changing social conditions, public opinion, and custom.
  59. stigmatize
    People who are labeled as outcasts or deviants because they have been accused of dishonorable conduct.
  60. strict liability crimes
    Illegal acts whose elements do not contain the need for intent, or mens rea; they are usually acts that endanger the public warfare, such as illegal dumping of toxic wastes.
  61. substantive criminal law
    Which is the written code that defines crimes and their punishments, reflects the values, beliefs, and opinions of society's mainstream.
  62. utilitarianism
    The view that people's behavior is motivated by the pursuit of pleasure and the avoidance of pain.
  63. voluntary manslaughter
    A homicide committed in the heat of passion or during a sudden quarrel; although intent may be present, malice is not.
  64. white-collar crime
    Illegal acts that capitalize on a person's status in the marketplace. White-collar crimes can involve theft, embezzlement, fraud, market manipulation, restraint of trade, and false advertising.