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50 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
Statistical definition of deviance
Common conditions determine what is normal or nondeviant; anything in the statistical minority represents deviance.
Absolutist definition of deviance
Deviance results from a value judgement based on absolute standards. Certain actions and conditions qualify as deviant because they have always defined deviance (through tradition or custom)
Reactivist definition of deviance
Deviance is whatever a social audience reacts against (or labels) as deviant. Something that elicits no reaction escapes identification as deviant.
Normative definition
The label deviant depends on a group's notion of actions and conditions that should and should not occur. This situational conception can change in different situations.
A culture within a culture--a collection of normas, values, and beliefs with content distinguishable from those of the dominant culture.
A subculture that acts in opposition to the larger culture.
The expectation of conduct in particular situations that regulates human social relations and behavior.
Proscriptive norms
Norms that tell people what they should not do
Prescriptive norms
Norms that tell people what they should do
Collection of norms that together convey expectations about appropriate conduct for persons in a particular position.
Social reactions to behavior
Informal sanctions
Unofficial actions of groups or individuals such as gossip or ostracism
Formal sanctions
Official group expressions meant to convey collective sentiments, such as criminal penalties.
Positive sanction
reward meant to encourage conduct that conforms to a norm
Negative sanction
punishment meant to discourage deviant conduct
types of Positive deviance (2)
Overconformity (very violent hockey player)
Deviance admiration (Robin Hood)
Justified deviance
When a behavior is deviant to us, but may be the norm to another culture, such as terrorist suicide bombings.
Social control
Collectively, the sanctions or other overt reactions to a deviant behavior or condition.
Solutions (3) to Hobbesian dilemma: Why isn't there more deviance?
1. Normative – socialization and internalization of shared norms and values
2. Exchange – desire to maintain mutually beneficial relationships in interdependent society (rational choice)
3. Conflict – coercive power of legitimate social control agents (Hobbes)
Durkheim's first law of social control: Mechanic solidarity
Intensity of punishment is greater in mechanical solidarity (rural/agrarian), and in societies where power in hypercentralized (authoritarian societies, simple division of labor, extended family, shared moral understanding).
Society is characterized by repressive law and harsh physical punishments.
Durkheim's second law of social control: Organic solidarity
Deprivations of liberty tend to become more the normal means of social control as societies move toward organic solidarity (differentiated societies, complex division of labor, nuclear families, functional interdependence).
Society is characterized by restitutive law and punishment in the forms of restrictions on individual liberty
Irony of social control
The application of social control can intensify or reinforce deviance
Media as an agent of social control
Mass media allows for the rapid spread of new information.
The media is often the vehicle by which the public becomes aware of social problems. Create intense public concern about and issue – a “moral panic”
Stanley Cohen's concept of "Moral Panic"
Mainstream media has initiated several trenchant and possibly hysterical moral panic campaigns.
Gramsci's concept of Cultural Hegemony
The perspective of the ruling class is absorbed by the masses of workers
Process by which we become social by learning norms and roles, based on social interaction, necessary for being adequately human,
source of our sense of self,
how culture is transmitted
takes place in total institutions
Taking on of new role, and the social process consists of removing any trace of former identity (stripping)
Person becomes dependent on the authority
Replaces the former sense of self or identity with a new one
Phases of a deviant career (4)
Neutralize norms
2. Managing Deviance
Maintain secrecy
Mitigate stigma (manipulating the physical space)
3. Rationalize behavior
Adopt subculture
4. Exit
Deviant roles
Being deviant is “a” social role that is assumed
Master role
Role with which person begins to identify and organizes other roles around that role
Rational Choice theories
Everyone has chouce to becomeDeviants are viewed as rational decision makers who choose to violate the law
Biological Trait theory
Belief that some people are predisposed to deviance because of biochemical factors, diet, genetic traits, or hormonal imbalance.
Criticism-No real evidence, possible crime-prevention strategies that could be controversial.
Psychological Trait Theories (3)
Psychiatric- Views deviance as a symptom of a psychological illness (or mental disorder) requiring treatment

Psychoanalytic- Deviance is caused by an imbalance in the id, ego, and superego. Alsoconflicts during critical psychosexual stages of development.

Psychological- Deviance is related to the presence of abnormal personality traits

Criticism-The medical model does not account for cultural differences, no real scientific explanation of deviant behavior.
Anomie/Strain theory
views crime as a normal response to the conditions that limit the opportunities for some individuals to obtain the economic success for which we are all supposed to strive

Criticisms-Dismisses that forms of strain exists for everyone.
Explains particular types of crimes and/or deviance in terms of their prevalence in society, but not why one individual becomes criminal and another doesn’t
Merton’s deviant paths to adapt to anomie (4)
1. Innovation –
Accept goals, reject means – use alternative methods
2. Ritualism –
Regect goals, accept means - routines are important
3. Retreatism –
Reject goals, reject means - withdrawn from society
4. Rebellion –
Reject goals & means and replace with new goals & means
Agnew’s General Strain Theory
Sources of Strain (failure to achieve goals, removal of positive stimuli, presentation of negative stimuli, disjunction of expectations) lead to
Negative Affective States (anger, frustration, disappointment, depression, fear) lead to...
Antisocial Behavior (drug abuse, delinquency, violence, dropping out)
Cultural Deviance
“American Dream”
Goal – accumulation of material goods and wealth
Process – socialization of youth to pursue material success above all else.
Social institutions (families) have been rendered powerless to reach goals
Quinney's social reality of crime
the social definition of crime is constructed by those who have titled authority and power
Conflict theory (structural)
The definition of the law is controlled by people who hold social and political power.
Deviance involves actions that interfere with the interests of those with economic power; thus the actions of those who lack power are more likely to be labeled as deviant

Criticisms-Not all conflict represents social or economic class.
Crime, arrest/punishment continues to exist in non-capitalist countries
Labeling theory (processual)
Deviance as a “Reaction” - Becker
Societal reaction defines and creates deviance. Labels affect identity and self-concept.

Criticisms: Ignores original deviant act,
Fails to explain the behavior of those committing deviant acts who are never caught.
Takes away the responsibility of the deviant.
Little empirical evidence on the effects of sanctions on all forms of deviance
Lemert's Primary and Secondary deviance
Primary Deviance- initial behavior that causes recognition

Secondary Deviance- society’s response to behavior and the subsequent deviant behaviors that result from response
Tertiary Deviance
Individuals “actively protest” their labels – reject rejection
Schur's stigma contests
Different groups promote competing rules and definitions of deviance.
Society’s determination of deviance reflects the power of the group – with the least powerful groups carrying the label as deviant
Durkheim's influence on Social Control Theory
Social Control theory is based on Durkheim’s concept of Anomie, with human interaction and ties to society keeping people from being deviant
Reckless' Containment Theory
Inner containment:
individuals self restraint
ability to resist inducements

Outer containment:
Factors that help fight off external pressures to deviate
Elements of Hirschi’s Social Bond (4)
1. attachment:
the strength of attachment or ties to significant others
2. commitment:
pursuit of cultural ideals and acceptance of prosocial values
3. involvement:
investment of time / effort in prosocial activities
4. belief:
acceptance of cultural values and morals
Gottfredson and Hirschi’s Self-Control Theory
Adds to Hirschi’s Social control theory’s elements of the social bond.
-kids engage in deviance because they perceive it to be advantageous (rational choice).
-kids are rational and choose deviant behavior, but relationships with parents or guardians can deter such behavior (routine activities).
-certain kids are “predisposed” to deviance, but involvement in conventional activities and attachment to parents can prevent such behavior (biosocial).
-certain kids have low-self control and are impulsive (psychological), which they claim stems from inadequate child-rearing practices and lack of discipline.
Social Control Theory (processual)
Humans will be deviant if not socialized to conform to the norms of society.

Criticisms- Some would say humans are not inherently evil.
What about those deviants who have been socialized to conform?
Social Learning Theory (processual)
Deviance, like any other behavior, is learned. Those we most intimately associate with are most likely to influence us.

Criticisms-Maybe deviants are rejected by the conforming segments of society and later seek association with other deviants.
Doesn’t account for those in deviant environments who do not become deviant
Durkheim's function of deviance
Society bonds more in reaction to deviance
Defines boundaries
Can be a safety valve to release pressure and prevent more harmful acts