Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.
FUNCTIONALISM 
ON CRIME AND DEVIANCE
THE INEVITABILITY OF 
CRIME 
Functionalists believe crime is inevitable 
and universal despite the fact they think it 
mak...
WHY IS CRIME UNIVERSAL? 
Durkheim identifies two reasons… 
O Not everyone is equally and effectively socialised 
into the ...
THE POSITIVE FUNCTIONS 
Nevertheless, Durkheim says crime 
performs positive functions too… 
O Boundary Maintenance 
O Ada...
BOUNDARY MAINTENANCE 
Crime produces a reaction which unifies it’s members 
in condemnation of the wrong doer. This reinfo...
ADAPTION AND CHANGE 
All change starts with deviance. For example, 
challenging existing norms and values is deemed a 
dev...
OTHER FUNCTIONS… 
O Davis says prostitution acts as a ‘safety valve’ for the 
release of men’s sexual frustration 
O Polsk...
CRITICISMS 
O Society doesn’t create crime in advance of 
strengthening social solidarity. 
O They do not consider the eff...
MERTON’S STRAIN THEORY 
Merton distinguishes between two factors 
which led to him creating a strain theory. 
O Structural...
THE AMERICAN DREAM 
An American society is supposedly meritocratic, with 
opportunities for all. However, the reality is t...
DEVIANT ADAPTATIONS TO 
STRAIN 
Merton identifies 5 responses to the strain of 
succeeding: 
O Conformity: accepting the g...
EVALUATION 
Merton is useful for showing how normal and deviant 
behaviour can arise from mainstream goals and 
explaining...
SUBCULTURAL STRAIN 
THEORY 
Cohen also criticises Merton… 
O He does not explain non-utilitarian crime 
O He ignores group...
ALTERNATIVE STATUS 
HIERARCHY 
Subcultures are characterised by spite, 
malice and hostility and they invert the 
values o...
EVALUATION 
This theory is useful because it offers an 
explanation of non-utilitarian crime and 
explains non-economic de...
THREE SUBCULTURES… 
Cloward and Ohlin identify three 
subcultures which have arose due to 
unequal access to illegitimate ...
O Criminal Subcultures: these provide an 
apprenticeship in utilitarian crime. They are found in 
neighbourhoods with a lo...
EVALUATION 
Cloward and Ohlin are useful because they 
provide an explanation of different types of 
working class devianc...
CRITICISMS 
O South explains how the drug trade means being in more 
than one subculture, but their theory doesn’t account...
INSTITUTIONAL ANOMIE 
THEORY 
Messner and Rosenfield’s theory focuses on the 
American Dream (like Merton). They argue its...
EVIDENCE 
O Downes and Hansen found that (through a survey) 
societies that spent more on welfare had lower rates 
of impr...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

Functionalism on Crime and Deviance

11,324 views

Published on

A2 AQA Sociology - Functionalism on Crime and Deviance

Published in: Education
  • Want to earn $4000/m? Of course you do. Learn how when you join today! ★★★ http://scamcb.com/ezpayjobs/pdf
       Reply 
    Are you sure you want to  Yes  No
    Your message goes here

Functionalism on Crime and Deviance

  1. 1. FUNCTIONALISM ON CRIME AND DEVIANCE
  2. 2. THE INEVITABILITY OF CRIME Functionalists believe crime is inevitable and universal despite the fact they think it makes society less stable. Durkheim said “crime is normal… an integral part of all healthy societies.”
  3. 3. WHY IS CRIME UNIVERSAL? Durkheim identifies two reasons… O Not everyone is equally and effectively socialised into the shared norms and values, so some will deviate O The diversity of lifestyles and values. This means that some norms in one culture may be deemed deviant in another. Durkheim says this is due to anomies in society. Modern society has a more complex, specialised division of labour. Therefore, the collective conscience is weak, and so crime rates are on the rise.
  4. 4. THE POSITIVE FUNCTIONS Nevertheless, Durkheim says crime performs positive functions too… O Boundary Maintenance O Adaption and Change
  5. 5. BOUNDARY MAINTENANCE Crime produces a reaction which unifies it’s members in condemnation of the wrong doer. This reinforces an individual’s commitment to the shared norms and values. The purpose of punishment is to reaffirm society’s shared rules and social solidarity. Courts can also dramtise the wrong doing and publically stigmatise the offender, which will prevent people from rule breaking.
  6. 6. ADAPTION AND CHANGE All change starts with deviance. For example, challenging existing norms and values is deemed a deviant act, but it could give rise to a new culture. If this doesn’t happen, society could stagnate and not make necessary adaptive changes. Durkheim says… O Too much crime could tear society apart O Too little crime could indicate that society is repressing it’s members which results in no change or freedom.
  7. 7. OTHER FUNCTIONS… O Davis says prostitution acts as a ‘safety valve’ for the release of men’s sexual frustration O Polsky says porn safely channels a variety of sexual desires resulting in less adultery O Albert Cohen says some acts can indicate that an institution isn’t functioning properly. For example, truancy could highlight a fault in the education system. O Erikson say that is crime can be seen as positive, maybe society is organised to promote it? Is the job of agencies to sustain a suitable level of crime? Crime and festivals etc. license misbehaviour which would normally be punished.
  8. 8. CRITICISMS O Society doesn’t create crime in advance of strengthening social solidarity. O They do not consider the effect of individuals; who is crime functional for?
  9. 9. MERTON’S STRAIN THEORY Merton distinguishes between two factors which led to him creating a strain theory. O Structural: what the institutional structure of society allows an individual to achieve legitimately. O Cultural: the goals a culture encourages an individual to achieve.
  10. 10. THE AMERICAN DREAM An American society is supposedly meritocratic, with opportunities for all. However, the reality is that disadvantaged groups are denied opportunities. The strain between the cultural goal of money and success and the lack of legitimate opportunities to achieve this produces frustration, creating a pressure to deviate (‘the strain to anomie’). This is increased by the fact that more emphasis is put on achieving the goal than there is on achieving it legitimately.
  11. 11. DEVIANT ADAPTATIONS TO STRAIN Merton identifies 5 responses to the strain of succeeding: O Conformity: accepting the goals of society and striving to achieve them legitimately. O Innovation: accepting the goals, but achieving them illegitimately. O Ritualism: giving up on achieving the goals but internalising legitimate means to achieve their own goals. O Retreatism: rejecting the goals and legitimate means (drop-outs) O Rebellion: rejecting the goals, and bringing in new ones to be achieved via a revolution (e.g. Martin Luther King)
  12. 12. EVALUATION Merton is useful for showing how normal and deviant behaviour can arise from mainstream goals and explaining patters in official statistics. However, he is criticised… O He takes crime statistics at face value and over represents working class crime. O He is too deterministic – not all of the working class deviate O Marxists argue he ignores the power of the working class O He assumes value consensus
  13. 13. SUBCULTURAL STRAIN THEORY Cohen also criticises Merton… O He does not explain non-utilitarian crime O He ignores group deviance Cohen conducted a study which focused on working class boys, each of whom were culturally deprived. He found their lack of skills to achieve the goals of society led to frustration. In order to obtain a high status, they joined a delinquent subculture.
  14. 14. ALTERNATIVE STATUS HIERARCHY Subcultures are characterised by spite, malice and hostility and they invert the values of mainstream society. Cohen believes a subcultures’ function is to offer an alternative status hierarchy through delinquent acts, having failed legitimately.
  15. 15. EVALUATION This theory is useful because it offers an explanation of non-utilitarian crime and explains non-economic delinquency. Criticisms… O He assumes the working class begin sharing middle class values O His study is gender bias O He assumes all working class people will resort to a subculture
  16. 16. THREE SUBCULTURES… Cloward and Ohlin identify three subcultures which have arose due to unequal access to illegitimate structures. Which subculture depends on neighbourhoods…
  17. 17. O Criminal Subcultures: these provide an apprenticeship in utilitarian crime. They are found in neighbourhoods with a long standing criminal culture. O Conflict Subculture: these are loose gangs which provide a release for men with blocked opportunities. They can be found in neighbourhoods with a high population turnover, social disorganisation and no professional crime network. O Retreatist Subcultures: the members turn to illegal drug use because they haven’t succeeded as a criminal or gang leader. They can be found in any neighbourhood.
  18. 18. EVALUATION Cloward and Ohlin are useful because they provide an explanation of different types of working class deviance. Nevertheless, they have been criticised…
  19. 19. CRITICISMS O South explains how the drug trade means being in more than one subculture, but their theory doesn’t account for this. O Some retreatists are professional dealers making a living from utilitarian crime. O Their theory is a ‘reactive’ one – they assume everyone shares the same goal at first. O Miller explains how the working class have their own independent subculture separate from the mainstream culture. Deviance occurs from trying to achieve goals of their own (‘focal concerns’) O Matza says most delinquents drift in and out of delinquency
  20. 20. INSTITUTIONAL ANOMIE THEORY Messner and Rosenfield’s theory focuses on the American Dream (like Merton). They argue its obsession with money and success and its ‘winner takes all’ mentality exert ‘pressures towards crime by encouraging an anomic cultural environment in which people are encouraged to adopt an anything goes mentality’. However, in the pursuit of wealth, wealth is over focused and so things like manners are not taught. Therefore, crime is inevitable.
  21. 21. EVIDENCE O Downes and Hansen found that (through a survey) societies that spent more on welfare had lower rates of imprisonment. This supports Messner and Rosenfield’s claim that societies that protect the poor from the worst excesses of the free market have less crime. O Savelsberg applies the strain theory to post-communist societies in Eastern Europe, which saw a rapid rise in crime after the fall of communism in 1989. He attributes this rise to communism’s collective values being replaced by new western capitalist goals of ‘money success’

×