White Collar Crime

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SUBCULTURAL THEORIES OF CRIME

Subcultural theories of crime:
White collar crime and punishment

Ksenia Zhukov
Criminal Justice 710
Professor McCoy
Professor West
March 22, 2012

SUBCULTURAL THEORIES OF CRIME
Abstract
Theories of crime relating to the causes and consequences of deviant and criminal behavior that are subjected to changes in place and time. In turn, theories of crime seriously affect the value orientation of society and public opinion on the causes of crime and sometimes even change them. Various theories are the foundation for any research. They define the goals, objects, and methods, yielding the concept of the main elements of the subject. The subcultural theories of crime are among the leading theories of crime arguing that some individuals turn to crime because they belong to groups that excuse, justify or approve of crime. White-collar crimes, that involve the same general process as other criminal behavior, can be studied in the context of subcultural theories of crime. Any organizations or individuals that commit white-collar crime can be examples of subcultures that can become deviant. In fact, white-collar criminals have inflicted more harm on American society than everyday street crimes; however, the justice system has treated white-collar offenders with more indulgence than street violators.

The penalties for credit card fraud may vary, ranging from small fines to many years of incarceration, but the most effective purpose for punishment of white-collar crime is restitution.

SUBCULTURAL THEORIES OF CRIME
Subcultural theories of crime:
White-collar crime and punishment
To better understand the reasons of crime one needs to study its theories. Criminal behavior has been studied by many researchers and viewed from different angles for years. In spite of this, one still cannot clearly and unambiguously answer the question of why people commit crimes. In order to answer this question about the reasons for the origin and the existence of crime, one needs to expand the search and select a primary element of this phenomenon. Paradoxical as it may sound, the cause of crime is man, Homo sapiens, and more specifically, a person who has opposed itself to society. Crime has emerged in the course of the expansion of the tribal communities, when an individual was separated from the group. In that historical period man acquired a new significant intellectual characteristic, the will of the community. The new creative man stepped up in society and started developing science and culture. On the other hand man’s autonomy was the basis of criminal behavior that was directed against the public interests (Huff, 1978). People commit different kinds of action every day. The laws, Constitution and rules of behavior ensure that everything one does is legal. The laws and rules create a framework. That is, if you violate the law then you are a criminal and the people under previous agreement isolate you from society. All of these laws and rules are nothing more than an agreement to help society reasonably protect its members from criminals. One must realize that criminals do not arrive from the Moon; it is society that makes them behave that way. Questions one may ask: Why does one person choose

SUBCULTURAL THEORIES OF CRIME

to disturb others, and another does not? Why do some people commit crimes and others don’t. If the answers to these questions are logical, we can produce an infinite number of foundations for what leads to criminal behavior, such as living conditions, education, some innate human characteristics, and so on. So if society finds the answers to these questions, then why would it not change the terms, conditions, ways and methods of education? According to Chambliss (1974), the starting point for the systematic study of crime is not to ask why some people become criminals while others do not, but to ask first why is it that some acts get defined as criminal while others do not...
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