Sociology Notes Chapter 6

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					Chapter 6

   – What is deviance?
   – Deviance: behavior that violates the standards of conduct or expectations of a group or society
   – We are all deviant at times
   – What is deviant in our culture may not be deviant in another culture
   – What is deviant today may not be deviant in the future
   – Refers to the ACT not the PERSON
   – Deviant: a person performing deviance
   – The ACT that is being questioned and judged, not the person

   – Crime: a violation of criminal law for which some governmental authority applies formal
      penalties (formal Sanctions)
   – 8 index crimes: murder, rape, robbery, assault, burglary, theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson

Five Types of Crime
   – Classifies crimes in terms of how they are committed and how society views the offenses
   – 1. Victim-less Crime
   – 2. Professional Crime
   – 3. Organized Crime
   – 4. White collar crime
   – 5. Transnational Crime

   1.   Victim-less Crime
   –    Victim less Crime: the willing exchange of widely desired, but illegal goods and services
   –    Example: Prostitution
   –    Many people argue that victim-less crimes are not victim-less- the prostitutes themselves are
   –    Labeling and conflict theory approaches could be used here
   –    2 questions:
        – Who really has the power to define some behavior as a crime?
        – Who has the power to label that criminal?
   –    2. Professional Crime
        – Professional crime/criminal: a person who pursues crime as a day to day occupation
        – Example: Local drug dealer, shoplifter
   –    3. Organized Crime
        – Organized Crime: the work of a group that regulates relations among criminal enterprises
            involved in illegal activities
        – Examples: Gambling, drug smuggling
        – It is a lot like the corporate world because it can allocate territory, set prices, and settle
        – Transnational organized crime includes drug and arms smuggling, money laundering, and
            human trafficking
   –    4. White Collar Crime
  – White Collar Crime: illegal acts committed in the course of business activities often by
      affluent respectable people
  – Examples: Tax evasion, consumer fraud, bribery, embezzlement, and collusion
  – Corporate Crime: Some types of white collar crime which represent the acts of a business or
      corporation in the committing of an act of crime
  – Examples: environmental pollution, tax fraud, stock fraud, accounting fraud, OSHA
  – We often see white collar criminals get off with a slap on the wrist compared to the street
      crimes and the sentences those street criminals get- especially when you compare the cost to
      others for the crimes committed.
– 5. Transnational Crime
  – Transnational Crime: crime that occurs across multiple national borders
  – Illegal shipment of goods such as drug trafficking, human slavery, and child pornography
  – U.N. Protocols are enforced when possible, buy many countries were to proceed by using
      their own national laws to prosecute these criminals
– Explaining Deviance
  – What do people violate social norms?
  – Some people think it is due to “bad blood” or a biological reason
  – Sociologists disagree
– Functionalist Perspective
  – Explains why deviance happens
  – Deviance is both positive and negative
  – Functions of deviance: (positive)
      – 1. enhances conformity
      – 2. strengthens solidarity and promotes social cohesion
      – 3. provides a safety vale for anger- letting off steam
      – 4. can create or encourage social change
  – Negative: Upsets the balance and equilibrium of society
  – Anomie: the loss of direction felt in a society where social control of individuals has
      become ineffective- a sense of normlessness- not knowing what the norms of society are.

– Merton's Anomie Theory of Deviance
  – Explains why people conform or are deviant
  – Example: Success is a goal in our society; not everyone has the means to achieve that goal
  – Look at pg. 175 in Thio Text.

– Five Groups
  – Conformer- accepts both the goal (success) and the means (hard work) of society
  – Innovator- accepts goal (success) but not means (hard work)- example: bank robber
  – Ritualist- doesn't accept goal (success) but does accept means (hard work)- example:
     bureaucrat who blindly applies the rules and regulations without thinking about the overall
     goal of an organization.
  – Retreatist- rejects both the goals and means of society- example: drug addict
  – Rebel: Rejects both the goals and the means and replaces those goals and means with new
     goals and means. Example: a revolutionary political organization or militia group.
– Control Theory
  – Controlling deviance depends on our ties to others
  – Four types of social ties:
     – Conventional attachment to people
     – Commitment to conformity
     – Conventional attachment to societal activities
     – Morality is the motivation
  – The lack of social bonds causes deviance

– Shaming Theory
  – Two types
     – Disintegrative: punishment, stigma, banishment
     – Reintegrative: more positive: guilt but constructive help as well

– Stigma
  – Stigma: a label society uses to devalue members and even some large groups who are
  – Stigma is placed on an individual by others
      – Examples: often those who are stigmatized have their deviant act as their master status
         (conflict, handicapped, etc.)
      – Some forms of deviance are socially tolerated:
         – Internet Jokes
         – Downloading music
– Conflict Perspective
  – Tries to explain why there are laws against some behaviors and not others
  – Inequality and power are key issues
  – People with power protect their own interests and define deviance to suit their needs
  – People with power are more likely to commit crimes

– Power Theory
  – Powerful people are more likely to commit crimes
  – 3 reasons:
     – Greater motive
     – Greater opportunity
     – Less social control

  – Differential justice- differences in the way social control is exercised over different groups
  – Often thought to be based on racial, ethnic, or social class backgrounds
      – White offenders receive shorter sentences than black offenders
– Society tends to treat women stereotypically
  – past
  – present
– Feminist theorists see deviance and crime as originating from an economic relationship
– Example: men have greater earning power than women, therefore, feminization of poverty
   – Interactionist Perspective
     – Explains how a person ends up committing a deviant act
     – Emphasis: every behavior and meanings of deviance

   – Cultural Transmission
     – Cultural Transmission focuses on the fact that deviant behavior is learned by interacting
        with others

   – Differential Association
     – The process by which exposure to attitudes favorable to criminal acts leads to the violation
         of rules and norms
     – It depends on who you associate with, the groups you are a member of.
     – Remember: deviance is Learned

   – Routine Activities Theory
     – For a crime or deviant act to occur, there must be both a perpetrator and an object in close
        proximity- at the same time
     – Example: Car theft- more cars will be stolen where there are deviants in inner cities and cars
        left on streets unattended

   – Labeling Theory
     – Attempts to explain why certain people are viewed (or labeled) as deviant
     – How labels are given
     – It is the response to an act that makes it deviant, not the act or behavior itself
     – Labeling theory is also called the societal reaction approach
        – Saints and the Roughnecks
        – Aces and Bombers article
     – Labeling theory focuses on who applies the labels to others

   – Primary and Secondary Deviance
     – Primary Deviance: the act of deviant behavior
     – Secondary Deviance: When the individual believes they are deviant and come to believe
        that the label applies to them.

   – Medicalization of Deviance
     – Deviant behavior caused by disease
     – Not controlled by deviant person

   – African Americans are more likely than whites to commit as well as be arrested for crimes
   – Why?
   – High unemployment, higher stress, high poverty rates, and dealing with racism
   – Racial profiling
   – Asian Americans have lower crime and arrest rates than whites
   – Why?
   – Factors discussed: forms of discipline, “model minority” perception
   – Lower-class citizens: more likely to commit street crimes
   – High-class citizens are more likely to commit white-collar crimes/corporate crimes
   – Men are more likely than women to engage in all types of crime
   – Crimes by females are on the rise

   – Personally reported crime rates, many crimes are not reported
   – Victimization surveys- only sent to a sample of households; many people unwilling/unable to
      report crime

U.S. Crime Rates
   – U.S. Exceeds other nations in crime rates
   – Violent crimes more common in U.S.
   – Why?
       – Place a high expectation on economic success
       – Great divide between rich and poor
       – Other factors: unemployment, alcohol and drug abuse

Social Control
   – Social control: The techniques and strategies for preventing deviant human behavior in any
   – It happens at all levels of a society from family to government
   – When someone is deviant we apply sanctions
   – Sanctions: The penalties and rewards attached to the expectations of behavior and expected in

Functionalist Perspective
   – Maintain that people must respect social norms if any group or society is to survive
   – Societies could not function if massive numbers of people were deviant

Conflict Perspective
   – Social control just maintains the benefits the powerful have and recreates the disadvantages of
       those without power
   – On the other hand:
       – Without resistance to social norms, progress would not be made
       – Examples:

Interactionist Perspective
    – Social control operates on both groups and societal levels
    – Face-to-face interactions should be the focus
    – Helps us understand why people are deviant- the meaning behind the action

How does social control work?
  – Stanley Milgram
   – Two levels of social control:
   – Conformity: going along with peers
   – Obedience: compliance with higher authority

Milgram's study
   – People will follow authority- even to the extent of causing possible harm to others if they feel
      that the authority figure truly has that authority

   – Irving Janis
   – Groupthink: narrowing of thought by a group of people

Informal and formal social control
   – Ultimate form of social sanction of social control in the U.S?
      – Death penalty
   – How effective is this form of social control in stopping crime

  –  Law: governmental social control
  –  Some laws are broad and apply to everyone
  –  Some laws are specific and apply to specific acts
  –  Sociologists see the creation of laws as a social process- they change
     – For example; legal drinking age, hiring illegal immigrants, smoking on airlines, the speed
   – We conform to social norms because we want to belong and get along in society

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Description: Class notes for college level sociology class. Chapter 6.