Explain the Different Sociological Explanations for Crime and Deviance

Topics: Sociology, Juvenile delinquency, Criminology Pages: 2 (658 words) Published: March 8, 2011
Explain the different sociological explanations for crime and deviance Sociologists argue that there are many different sociological explanations for crime and deviance present. In this essay I will be discussing the different sociological explanations for crime and deviance.

Firstly, a sociological explanation named inadequate socialization is based on young people’s involvement in criminal and deviant behaviour, which has been explained in terms of the negative influence of family background and home environment. An example is The New Right as it expresses that children from parentally deprived homes are more likely to commit crime. Inadequate socialization focuses on what they view as ineffective socialization practices which are known as inadequate parenting and lack of parental supervision of children, which lead to delinquency. An example of this would be that delinquent teenagers are seen as inadequately socialized into society’s norms and values.

Furthermore, socialisation is seen to be another explanation for crime and deviance as it is the process through which we learn the culture and appropriate behaviour of the particular group or society we are born into. This socialization process also prepares us for the roles we play in society. The role of a ‘teacher’ for example, would suggest how we expect a ‘teacher’ to behave during the working days.

Additionally, some sociologists believe that crime and deviance are occurring today because of sub-culture and peer groups. A study showing this is by Albert Cohen (1955) who was a man that studied juvenile delinquency among the working class boys in North America. He felt that individuals did not carry out delinquent acts such as vandalism or violence by themselves. Cohen saw juvenile delinquency as a phenomenon. Young males learnt to become delinquents by becoming members of groups or gangs in which delinquent behaviour already exists as ‘the done thing’.

In addition, relative deprivation is known...
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