This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Why People Commit Crime: A Strain Theory Perspective

2515 words - 11 pages

Why People Commit Crime: A Strain Theory PerspectiveSOCI150 CriminologyDeviance, criminal behavior and wrong doings; why do they occur? People don't just wake up one morning and say "I'm off from work today so why don't I just go rob a bank". There has to be something in their past or present experiences that cause one to engage in criminal behavior. So what makes people commit crime and most importantly why do they fell they need to so? Criminologists have studied this question for many years and came up with so many different types of answers and theories. All these theories prevail their own unique reason for crime. Due to my interest in this question I also have been reading some ...view middle of the document...

He spoke English, French, German, Italian, and Latin. He received a Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1936. Soon after, he became a faculty member at Harvard. From 1939 to 1941, he served on the faculty of Tulane University in New Orleans. In 1941, he was appointed to work at Columbia University and became a full professor there in 1947. He published countless works that have aided any sociologists both then and now. His publications broadened the realms of sociology and helped develop new genres of study within the field such as crime and deviance related research. His most famous writings were Social Theory And Social Structure and On The Shoulders of Giants published in 1965. Merton died on February 23, 2003.Merton stated that anomie is the form that societal disorder that takes when there is a significant detachment "between valued cultural ends and legitimate societal means to those ends"(McCluskey 2002 p11). Basically Merton said that all people have legitimate goals such as "wealth, status and personal happiness", (Schmalleger, 2002 p208), they are some of the main desires that people posses and strive to get. Some people can never reach these goals and to others they are handed down to them during childhood. Some two types of groups are lower class and upper class individuals. For a person to have wealth, status and personal happiness, they need certain types of tools, such as education, a good job, and financial saving. Robert Merton states that the means of achieving these goals are not evenly distributed to all members of society. Not everyone can afford and a good college education and progress to become a hard working doctor or lawyer. Dues to the large numbers of low class people in this world this type happy life and financial status is many times not accomplishable. This causes a strain; the dictionary meaning of the word strain states "A great or excessive pressure, demand, or stress on one's body, mind, or resources" (dictionary.com). Merton reveals in his Strain Theory that this consequences in criminal and deviant behavior when and individual finds out that he does not that the means to fulfill his goals.Merton did not mean that everyone who was denied access to society's goals became deviant. He presented five modes of adapting to strain. The chart below gives the five modes of adaptation and illustrates that for each mode there is a goal and mean. The "+" indicates available and the " - " not available. Conformity is the most common mode of adaptation. Individuals in this group accept both the goals as well as the prescribed means for achieving those goals. Conformists are the lucky ones who accept the goals of society and the means approved for achieving them. The people in this unit are mostly middle- class and upper-class individuals. The populations who adapt through innovation accept societal goals but don't have the means to achieve those goals. This causes them innovate (design) their own means to get ahead. Their...

Other Essays On Why People Commit Crime: A Strain Theory Perspective

Dictionary definition of attachment, strain and labeling theory - Portsmouth university - Essay

1792 words - 8 pages discusses the features involved when an individual experiences strain and then turns to deviant behaviour. Where individuals lay blame when they are under strain, they may not have developed coping skills, they may have no support network, and they could find themselves in a situation where the risk of the crime they are looking to commit is outweighed by the reward that would be gained. This view on criminal behaviour lends itself towards the

The effect of forensics on the research of type 2 diabtes mellitus - University of Southampton - Essay

3828 words - 16 pages understanding led Lombroso to believe criminals should be treated more humanely. His theory also influenced later biological theories such as genetic and neural explanations. Furthermore, the idea that different types of people commit different crimes influenced modern offender profiling techniques.  Limitations · Causation problem  · Racist  · Sexist   Causation problem  Even if criminals do have atavistic features this does not mean being a genetic

Canadian Legal System- Restorative Justice

2228 words - 9 pages reasons. Criminals have been punished to varying degrees in many countries for many years without the success that is expected. If harsher problems such as capital punishment, incarceration, electrical monitoring etc were successful at deterring crime why do so many criminal offend again and again? Why does crime continue to be such a major problem in Canadian society? In addition to these questions; conventional forms of Punishment are

What Are The Major Difficulties Associated With Theorising White-Collar Crimes?

1971 words - 8 pages companies that he took money from his Mirror Group pension funds to cover them and keep his empire afloat and kept his financial situation a secret for as long as he could (even from his wife).Proponents of strain and control theories have attempted to formulate a cause of white-collar crime. White-collar crime can been viewed as an 'innovative' response on the part of the business (or particular roles such as Robert Maxwell) to the strain of

Critically evaluate the claim that victims of crime precipitate their victimisation. - criminology - essay

2813 words - 12 pages ideologies with the lifestyle exposure theory. They both look extensively at how your everyday lifestyle plays a role in crime and your own victimisation, with the difference being, the lifestyle exposure theory being developed to explain why, and if, some groups of people are more likely to become victims than others. On the other hand, the routine activity theory aims to explain the changes in crime rates (H.L Dietrich 2008). Cohen and Felson

Is The Relationship Between Drugs And Crime A Causal One?

2322 words - 10 pages view that because of the nature of the criminal lifestyle, drug use is a systematic part of it. In this particular model, there is a strong notion that the criminal side of their life comes first, followed by the drug use. Therefore it would also be true to say that if the drugs were taken away completely their criminality would not be affected in any way. The sub-cultural theory is also used to explain how crime can lead to drugs. Statistics show

Chapter review for criminal justice chapter 2 - San Antonio College - Quiz

2476 words - 10 pages protection of society. Its advocates call for harsh punishments as a deterrent to crime and support availability of the death penalty. Rehabilitation Perspective The view that the primary purpose of criminal Justice is helping to care for people who cannot manage themselves. Crime is an expression of frustration anger created by social inequality and can be controlled by giving people that means to improve their lifestyle through conventional

All about me, and what i have been through - Narritive - Personal essay

936 words - 4 pages agree with the law but there are democratic opportunities to change it. Greed, anger, jealousy, revenge, and even pride could be a reason why some commit crimes. There are some people that commit crimes that they plan everything in advance, such as property crimes; this would increase there their gain and lower their chances of getting caught. Some people that commit crimes believe that committing crimes brings them great incentives, respect

Critically evaluate the evidence for and against geographical profiling - Undergraduate Psychology - Essay

1420 words - 6 pages ideas and principles of environmental criminology which highlights the factors influencing criminal spatial behaviour and location they choose to commit a crime (Rossmo, 2000). Incorporated into the literature are various essential theories that are important to geographic profiling. The first theory, Routine Activity Theory (Cohen and Felson 1979; Felson, 1994) posits that an offender will encounter opportunities to commit crimes in the areas they

Crime and media and how it socially constructs society - Carleton University, COMS 4800 - Essay

3036 words - 13 pages addition, crime from a theoretical perspective is definitely understood as a social construct, as it holds the meanings of acts, behaviours, and events. Specifically, through media construction and the effects of news media, crime is labeled and classified as a social disorder to isolate and validate criminal behaviour, in the hopes of preventing others in society from acting in a similar manner. The social construction of crime through the media can be

Motivation

358 words - 2 pages , since it can be rather complex in some cases. In general, there are often multiple motives that, when combined, lead individuals to commit a crime (Turvey 2002). Only in a rare case is a motive singular Nonetheless, people concentrate on finding one causative factor that can explain an individual's criminal behavior Ainsworth (2001).Interest in MotivePolice and lay-persons have different reasons for looking at motives. When a crime is committed, lay

Similar Papers

Why Not All People Are Treated Equally In To Kill A Mocking Bird Balga Essay

740 words - 3 pages and couldn't deal with certain occupations. An example t is when Atticus explains to Jem why Miss Maudie can't sit in the Jury, " why don’t people like us and Miss Maudie ever sit on juries... For one thing, Miss Maudie can’t serve on a jury because she’s a woman—." Ladies are not treated similarly in To Kill A Mockingbird since they believed that ladies were feeble and couldn't deal with that sort of work. Most ladies in those days had no

Criminal Theory Movie Correlation Crim 330 Essay

1749 words - 7 pages “New Jersey Drive” For this particular assignment I strongly felt the importance in choosing a film to speak about that I could personally relate to. In turn also describing a theory that correlates exactly with the problem in the movie itself. Even though there is no real actual explanation to why crime does occur, the Anomie-strain theory was able to relate the best with the movie. The Nick Gomez directed film called "New Jersey Drive" made in

Discuss The Problems Which May Arise In Linkage Analysis Which Uses Spatial And Temporal Data. Assignment Assignment

2578 words - 11 pages learning through the vast amounts of videos he watched which he then imitated in real life (Richards, 2017). However, other theories such as strain theory argue crime is due to structural factors rather than psychological factors. Macro-level studies generally conclude that poorer areas have more crime and individuals are more likely to be arrested, therefore suggesting they are more likely to commit crime because they face more strain within their

A Comparison Of Right & Left Realism In Criminology Westminister University Essay

2151 words - 9 pages minorities and the elderly have a realistic fear of crime due to being victims of street crimes. Left Realism also identified three major causes of why groups tend to commit such crimes; Relative Deprivation, in which the working class feel deprived in comparison to the middle class. Marginalization, people tend to feel powerless to change their situations, which then leads to Subcultures, where individuals who experience the weight of these