Deviance : A Sociological Context Essay

711 Words 3 Pages
Deviance, in a sociological context, describes actions or behaviors that violate informal social norms or formally-enacted rules. The ones who study social norms and their relation to deviance are sociologists, psychologists, psychiatrists, and criminologists, all of whom investigates how social norms change and are enforced over time. Deviance is divided into two types of actions. The first, is formal actions. Examples of formal deviance include robbery, rape, theft, and murder. The second type of form is informal deviance. Examples include: belching loudly, picking of the nose, or unnecessarily standing in close proximity of an individual. Furthermore we as a human race are all deviant from time to time. Being late for class can be categorized as a deviant act and same goes for wearing blue jeans to a formal wedding. We all at some point disobey common social norms in certain situations. Emile Durkheim focused his sociological investigations mainly on criminal acts, yet his conclusions have implications for all types of deviant behavior. In Emile view the punishments established within a culture help define acceptable behavior and contribute to stability. Durkheim introduced the term anomie into sociological literature to describe the loss of direction felt in a society when social control of an individual behavior has become ineffective According to the functionalist perspective deviance is a common part of human existence, with positive as well as negative…

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