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Social Etiology of Crime - Social Etiology of Crime Why do...

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1 Social Etiology of Crime Why do they do it? Sociological explanations of why groups differ in their involvement in crime
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2 Reasons for Crime The factors affecting criminal involvement are the same as those causing non-criminal activities
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3 Factors for Crime Opportunity – supply and means Motivation – attitudes, drives, stimuli Freedom – (benefits / costs) > 1 Skills – know how to, required abilities
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4 Sociological Theories Stress the societal roots of opportunity, motivation, freedom, and skills All attempt to tie in the macro with the micro-level factors of criminal behavior Attempt to explain why crime varies among groups within and between societies
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5 Blocked Opportunity Theories Influenced by Durkheim’s functionalist approach to social deviance Devised by Robert K. Merton (1938) as structural-strain theory Applied by Albert Cohen to delinquent-gang behavior Expanded by Cloward and Ohlin to violent, utilitarian, and non-utilitarian delinquency depending on opportunity for illegal means
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6 Blocked Opportunity Theory: Policy Open ( unblock ) opportunities for lower classes to attain success
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7 Blocked Opportunity Theory: Policy Effectiveness Limited success due to conflict among interest groups re: Re-distribution of resources
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8 Motivation Theories These theories are classified as cultural- transmission theories for they posit the root of crime in the values, beliefs, and attitudes held by groups.
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