Strain Theory And Its Effect On Society Essay

836 Words Jan 5th, 2016 4 Pages
Strain theory has been define in varies ways, Robert K. Merton describes it as social structures/societal goals that are presented to people as what they should strive towards in order to be successful in life, but at the same time society does not provide any effective legitimate means to reach that goals (Merton, 1938, Pg.675). Those who are in the lower brackets of society, and do to the pressure that society puts on the individual it leads to those individual finding other illegitimate means of reaching that goal, which Merton defines as being in the middle/ upper class (Merton, 1938, Pg.679). In the other hand Robert Agnew argues that strain theory is more complex than such societal structure, and pressure to achieve what society perceives as success. Agnew argues that strain theory does not just involve societal goals that do to the barriers blocking legitimate means of achieving cause individuals to commit crimes, but that other smaller circumstance such as bad influence also cause a strain that can lead to delinquency (AGNEW, 1997, Pg.74).

Robert K. Merton ideals of strain theory focus more on society as the cause of
Crimes, by putting a goal in front of an individual, but at the same time building barriers that limit, and almost eliminate the possibility of such individual to reach that goal (Merton, 1938, Pg.680). Merton also emphasizes that the goals that are set in society to been seen as a successful person are only monetary, so it means…

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