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12 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back

What two reasons did Durkheim give for why crime is inevitable?

1.Not everyone is equally socialised

2.Large diversity of lifestyles with varied norms and values from mainstream society

What are two reasons crime is positive?

What functions do boundary maintenance provide?

1. Acts as boundary maintenance

2.Allows adaption and change

Boundary maintenance provides social solidarity and reinforces shared norms

Give two other examples of crime being positive

Davis- prostitution acts as a safety valve

Cohen- Deviance shows that institutions may be failing

Evaluate Durkheim's theory or crime

-Doesn't state how much crime is necessary

-Crime promotes fear and isolation rather than solidarity

-Looks at functions for society but not the individual

Define Strain theory

Strain theory is when people cannot reach societies goals through legitimate means so find alternative ways

Name and describe the 5 groups Merton identified in relation to strain theory

Conformists-accept goals and means

Innovators-accept goals but not means

Ritualists-disregard goals but accept means

Retreatists-disregard both goals and means

Rebellion-change both to encourage change in society

Evaluate Merton's Strain Theory

-Ignores that the ruling class criminalise the poor

-Not everyone has shared goals

-Deterministic of w/c being criminals

What was Cohen's theory in regards to strain


Focused on W/C boys who are bottom of the hierarchy.

They look to other boys who then create a subculture who gain status by inverting mainstream values

Evaluate Cohen

+Explains non-utilitarian crimes

-Assumes everyone has shared goals

Describe Cloward and Ohlins theory of strain

3 subcultures

Criminal- long standing subculture to provide criminal apprenticeship

Conflict- disorganised causes unstable crime so mainly use violence

Retreatist- criminal career fails so turn to individualist career (e.g drugs)

Evaluate Cloward and Ohlins theory

-ignore M/C crime

-possible crossover of groups

-People aren't committed to one subculture

Give an example of recent strain theories (Cohen, Merton, Cloward and Ohlin not accepted)

Messner and Rossenfield- American dream emphasise success in an 'anything goes' mentality

Downes and Hansen- countries who spend more on welfare have lower imprisonment rates