Explain Juvenile Delinquency in Terms of Hirschi”S Social Bonding Theory, with Special Reference to the Case Study

Topics: Sociology, Criminology, Social control theory Pages: 17 (6018 words) Published: May 20, 2009
TITLE:
EXPLAIN JUVENILE DELINQUENCY IN TERMS OF HIRSCHI”S SOCIAL BONDING THEORY, WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO THE CASE STUDY Table of Contents
Content
Introduction
Overview of Travis Hirschi's Social Bond Theory
Applying Hirschi’s Social Bonding Theory to the Case of Susan Fryberg Critique of Self-Control Theory
Summary
Conclusion
References
Introduction
In this assignment I will try to explain juvenile delinquency in terms of Hirschi’s social bonding theory, with special reference to the case study of Susan Fryberg. I will briefly introduce you to Travis Hirschi and walk you thorough his social bonding theory. I will show how events that unfolded in Susan Frybergs life can be explained through Travis Hirschi’s social bonding theory. How the elements of attachment, commitment, involvement and belief would influence her life and her decisions ultimately ending in her detainment in a juvenile facility. I will also take a quick look at the implications that this theory has had on public policy reforms. Lastly I will try to expose some of the shortcoming of Travis Hirschi’s theory with a short critique thereof.

Introduction to Hirschi’s Social Bond Theory
Control theories take the opposite approach from other theories in criminology.  As their starting point, instead of asking what drives people to commit crime, they ask why most people not commit crime.  Control theorists generally argue that there is no problem explaining why people commit crime since all human beings suffer from innate human weaknesses which make them unable to resist temptation.  They focus on restraining or "controlling" factors that are broken or missing inside the personalities of criminals.  If these restraining factors are thought to involve society in some way, as with the sociological notion that norms are internalized, then the theory is said to be a "social" control theory, and is most probably a social bond theory.  Most control theories, however, are a blend of psychiatric, psychological, and sociological ideas.  The most well-known figure in control theory is Travis Hirschi, who emerged around 1969 from his "hellfire and delinquency" studies (Hirschi & Stark 1969) on religion and crime as a pioneer in social control theory and the method of self-report studies.  Hirschi's (1969) book contained the first fully developed social bonding theory.  The relationship between RELIGION and the social bond has attracted the attention of criminologists for years and sociologists for many years beforehand.  Among social bond theorists in criminology, those who postulate the primary importance of family factors usually emphasize the attachment element of the social bond, while those who postulate the primary importance of religion usually emphasize other elements of the social bond, such as commitment (along with commitment in the school setting), belief, or religion as a composite or fifth element of the social bond.  Regarding religion, the slight majority of research is in agreement that religion is a moderate insulator from delinquency and crime (Burkett & White 1974; Albrecht et.al. 1977; Tittle & Welch 1983; Baier & Wright 2001; Johnson et.al. 2001).  However, there are many studies which have NOT supported this conclusion (Hirschi himself in Hirschi & Stark 1969; Jensen & Erickson 1979; Evans et.al 1996; and Benda & Corwyn 1997).  Most limitations reported in the literature center around the problems of how to measure "religiosity" as well as what kind of crime to measure.  So-called "hellfire" by itself (usually measured as beliefs about the consequences of bad behavior) does NOT tend to insulate unless the crime being studied has some personal health issue associated with it (such as alcohol, drugs, smoking, and premarital sex).  Religion does not appear to have much of an effect at influencing less-trivial crime, and the reason may be that living in secular society (which condones much...

References: Ainsworth, M. (1982). "Attachment" in C. Parkes et. al., The Place of Attachment in Human Behavior. London: Tavistock.
Albrecht, S., Chadwick, B. & Alcorn, D. (1977). "Religiosity and Deviance." Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 16(3):263-74.
Austin, R. (1978). "Race, Father Absence, and Female Delinquency." Criminology 15:487-504
Akers, Ronald L
Arneklev, Bruce J., Garold G. Grasmick, Charles R. Tittle, and Robert J. Bursik, Jr. (1993). Low self-control and imprudent behavior. Journal of Quantitative Criminology. 9(3), 225-247.
Baier, C. & Wright, B. (2001). "If You Love Me, Keep My Commandments: A Meta-Analysis of Religion on Crime." Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency 38(1):3-21.
Belson, W. (1975). Juvenile Theft: The Causal Factors. NY: Harper.
Benda, B. & Corwyn, R. (1997). "Religion and Delinquency." Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 36(1):81-92.
Benson, M.L. and E. Moore. (1992). Are white-collar offenders and common criminals the same? An empirical and theoretical critique of a recently proposed general theory of crime. Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, 29, 251-272.
Brownfield, David and Ann Marie Sorenson. (1993). Self-control and juvenile delinquency: theoretical issues and an empirical assessment of selected elements of a general theory of crime. Deviant Behavior. 14, 243-264.
Buikhuisen, W. & H. Hoekstra. (1974). "Factors Related to Recidivism". British Journal of Criminology 14:63-69.
Burkett, S. & White, M. (1974). "Hellfire and Delinquency: Another Look." Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 13: 455-462.
Canter, R. (1982). "Family Correlates of Male and Female Delinquency". Criminology 20:149-67.
Datesman, S. & F. Scarpitti. (1975). "Female Delinquency and Broken Homes." Criminology 13:33-55.
Evans, D., Cullen, F., Burton, V., Dunaway, R., Payne, G. & Kethineni, S. (1996). "Religion, Social Bonds, and Delinquency." Deviant Behavior 17(1):43-70.
Felson, M. (1997). "Reconciling Hirschi 's 1969 Control Theory with the General Theory of Crime." Pp. 31-42 in S. Lab (Ed.) Crime Prevention at a Crossroads. Cincinnati: Anderson.
Glueck, S. & E. (1974). Of Delinquency and Crime. Springfield: Thomas.
Goldfarb, W. (1955). "Emotional and Intellectual Consequences of Psychological Deprivation in Infancy" in P. Hooch & J. Zubin (eds.) Psychopathology of Childhood. NY: Grune.
Gottfredson, M. & T. Hirschi. (1990). A General Theory of Crime. Stanford: Stanford Univ. Press.
Gove, W. & R. Crutchfield. (1982). "The Family and Juvenile Delinquency". Sociological Quarterly 23:301-19.
Greenberg, David F
Gutierres, S. & J. Giovannoni. (1977). "A Developmental Perspective on Runaway Behavior". Child Welfare 60:89-94.
Hirschi, Travis. (1967). Delinquency research. New York: The Free Press.
Hirschi, Travis. (1969). Causes of delinquency. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press.
Hirschi, Travis and Michael Gottfredson. (1980). Understanding crime. Beverly Hills: Sage Publications.
Hirschi, Travis and Michael R. Gottfredson. (1994). The generality of deviance. New Brunswick: Transaction Publishers.
Hirschi, Travis. (1995). The Family. In James Q. Wilson and Joan Petersilia (eds.). Crime. (pp. 121-140). San Francisco: Institute for Contemporary Studies.
Hirschi, T
Hirschi, T. (1969). Causes of Delinquency. Berkeley: Univ. of Ca Press.
Hirschi, T. & M. Gottfredson. (1986). "The Distinction Between Crime and Criminality". In Critique and Explanation: Essays in Honor of Gwynne Nettler, edited by T. Hartnagel & R. Silverman (pp. 44-69). NJ:Transaction.
Johnson, B., Jang, S., Larson, D. & De Li, S. (2001). "Does Adolescent Religious Commitment Matter?" Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency 38(1):22-43.
Johnstone, J. (1978). "Juvenile Delinquency and the Family". Youth and Society 9:299-313.
Kempf, K. (1993). "The Empirical Status of Hirschi 's Control Theory" Pp. 143-85 in F. Adler & W. Laufer (eds.) New Directions in Criminological Theory, Vol. 4, NJ: Transaction.
Kraus, J. & J. Smith. (1973). "The Relationship of Four Types of Broken Home to Some Neglected Parameters of Juvenile Delinquency". Australian Journal of Social Issues 8:52-57.
Laub, J. & R. Sampson. (1988). "Unraveling Families and Delinquency". Criminology 26:355-80.
Lilly, J. Robert, Francis T. Cullen, and Richard A. Ball. (1995). Criminological theory: context and consequences. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.
Loeber, R. & M. Stouthamer-Loeber. (1986). "Family Factors as Correlates and Predictors of Juvenile Conduct Problems and Delinquency". Pp. 29-149 in M. Tonry & N. Morris (eds.) Crime and Justice: Annual Review Vol. 7. Chicago:Univ.
Matsueda, R. & K. Heimer. (1987). "Race, Family Structure and Delinquency". American Sociological Review 52:826-40.
McCarthy, E., J. Gerstein & T. Langner. (1982). "The Behavioral Effects of Father Absence" Soc Beh & Pers 10:11-23.
Moerk, E. (1973). "Like Father, Like Son". Journal of Youth and Adolescence 2:303-12.
Needle, R., S. Su & W. Doherty. (1990). "Divorce, Remarriage, and Substance Abuse". J of Marriage and Family 52:157-69.
Nye, F. (1958). Family Relationships and Delinquent Behavior. NY: Wiley.
Patterson, G. (1982). Coercive Family Process. Eugene: Castalia.
Polk, K. (1991). "Book Review: A General Theory of Crime". Crime and Delinquency 37(4):575-81.
Power, M., P. Ash, E. Shoenberg & E. Sirey. (1974). "Delinquency and the Family". British Journal of Social Work 4:13-38.
Rankin, J. (1983). "The Family Context of Delinquency". Social Problems 30:466-79.
Reiss, A. (1951). "Delinquency as the Failure of Personal and Social Controls" Am. Soc. Review 16:196-207.
Rosen, L. (1985). "Family and Delinquency: Structure or Function?" Criminology 23:553-73.
Rutter, M. (1972). Maternal Dependence Reassessed. NY: Penguin.
Saucier, J. & A. Ambert. (1983). "Parental Marital Status and Health Risk Behavior". Journal of Adolescence 18:403-11.
Scott, Joseph E. and Travis Hirschi. (1988). Controversial issues in crime and justice. Newbury Park: Sage Publications.
Siegel, L
Steinberg, L. (1987). "Single Parents, Stepparents, and Adolescent Peer Pressure". Child Development 58:269-75.
Thompson, William E., Jim Mitchell, and Richard A. Doddler. (1984). An empirical test of Hirschi 's control theory of delinquency. Deviant Behavior. 5, 11-22.
Tittle, C. & Welch, M. (1983). "Religiosity and Deviance: Toward a Contingency Theory of Constraining Effects." Social Forces 63(3)653-681.
Toby, J. (1957). "Social Disorganization and Stake in Conformity" J. Crim Law & Criminology 48:12-17.
Van Voorhis, P., F. Cullen, R. Mathers & C. Garner. (1988). "The Impact of Family Structure and Quality on Delinquency: A Comparative Assessment of Structural and Functional Factors". Criminology 26:235-61.
Wadsworth, M. (1979). Roots of Delinquency. NY: Barnes.
Wells, L. & J. Rankin. (1986). "The Broken Homes Model of Delinquency". J. of Res. in Crime and Delinquency 23:68-93.
Wiatrowski, M., D. Griswold & M. Roberts. (1981). "Social Control Theory and Delinquency". Am Soc Review 46:525-41.
Wilkinson, K. (1980). "The Broken Home and Delinquent Behavior" in T. Hirschi & M. Gottfredson (eds.) Understanding Crime. CA:Sage.
Wilson, J. & R. Herrstein. (1985). Crime and Human Nature. NY:Touchstone.
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • “Social Perspectives on Juvenile Delinquency” Essay
  • Essay on Differential Association and Social Bonding Theory
  • Juvenile Delinquency Theories Essay
  • Juvenile Delinquency Case Work Essay
  • Juvenile Delinquency Essays
  • Juvenile delinquency Essay
  • Social Threat of Juvenile Delinquency Essay
  • Social Leanring Theories and its Effects on Juvenile Delinquency Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free