UNT CJUS 3310 - Ch. 4 Summary (3 pages)

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Ch. 4 Summary



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Ch. 4 Summary

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University of North Texas
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Cjus 3310 - Org/consensual Crime
Org/consensual Crime Documents
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CJUS 3310 Organized and Consensual Crime Chapter 4 Summary Sociological theories that help explain organized crime o There is a paucity of theories in sociology and psychology explaining organized crime o According to Robert Merton s version of anomie organized crime is a normal response to pressures exerted on certain persons by the social structure the strain between goals and means o In the environment where organized crime has traditionally thrived strain is intense o Conditions of severe deprivation coupled with readily available success models such as racketeers and drug dealers make certain enclaves spawning grounds for organized crime o According to Merton American culture is characterized by pathological materialism Sociological theories that help explain organized crime Sutherland s differential association o According to Sutherland s theory of differential association all behavior lawful and criminal is learned within intimate personal groups When the associations are criminal the actor learns the techniques of committing crime and the drives attitudes and rationalizations that add up to a favorable precondition to criminal behavior o Learning the techniques of sophisticated criminality requires the proper environment ecological niches or enclaves where delinquent or criminal subcultures flourish and this education is available Sociological theories that help explain organized crime subcultures o Subcultural theory explains criminal behavior as learned through differential association by youth to whom being right or wrong in terms of the wider society is not a guidepost for behavior o According to Shaw and McKay s view of criminal subcultures the presence of a large number of adult criminals in certain areas means that children there are in contact with crime as a career symbolized by organized crime Sociological theories that help explain organized crime social disorganization differential opportunity and social control o Social disorganization the result of the combined interactive effects of industrialization immigration and urbanization result in the development of deviant traditions that once established can create their own albeit extra legal forms of social control o Members of organized crime have typically emerged from the recruiting grounds of defended neighborhoods recognized ecological niches whose inhabitants form cohesive groupings and seal themselves off through the efforts of delinquent gangs restrictive covenants and a forbidding reputation o Conditions of severe deprivation with extremely limited access to ladders of legitimate success result in collective adaptations in the form of delinquent subcultures one of which is the rackets subculture in which gang activity is devoted to utilitarian criminal pursuits an adaptation that begins to approximate organized crime o Since there is a surplus of contenders for positions in organized crime a certain proportion of those who aspire may not be permitted to engage in the behavior for which they have prepared themselves o According to social control theory delinquent acts result when an individual s bond to society is weak or broken o External and internal restraints determine whether we move in the direction of crime or of law abiding behavior External restraints include social disapproval linked to public shame and or social ostracism and fear of punishment Internal restraints include what psychoanalytic theory refers to as the superego an unconscious yet powerful conscience like mechanism that provides a sense of guilt Sociological theories that help explain organized crime o The pool of available candidates for membership in organized crime dwindled in Jewish communities In Italian communities it remained adequate enough the large scale organizations needed to profit from Prohibition were no longer necessary o Daniel Bell refers to crime as an American way of life A Queer Ladder of Social Mobility Francis Ianni notes that this queer ladder had organized crime as the first few rungs Each successive immigrant group experienced strain to which some members reacted by innovating in accord with a tradition that had been established by earlier American entrepreneurs the Robber Barons Ethnic succession results when a group experiences success in crime and legitimate opportunities thereby become more readily available Strain subsides and the group moves out of organized crime creating an opportunity for innovation for the succeeding immigrant group Organized crime comprises a deviant subculture to which members have a commitment that is not mitigated by the absence of strain A development affecting ethnic succession in organized crime is the arrival of relatively large numbers of southern Italian immigrants into the New York metropolitan area during the 1960s Zips Psychological theories help explain organized crime o Central to the psychoanalytic explanation for crime is the superego a conscience like mechanism whose function is to restrain the person from antisocial behavior o Persons with an antisocial personality disorder have a poorly developed superego and are restrained only by the fear of punishment that alone cannot exercise adequate control over antisocial impulses Such persons suffer little or no quilt as a result of engaging in socially harmful behavior o According to learning theory antisocial behavior is the result of positive and negative reinforcement directly from others for example peers or the failure to learn how to discriminate between competing norms both lawful and unlawful because of inappropriate reinforcement The influence of brain chemistry in explaining the behavior of those in organized crime o Brain chemistry can help to explain violent behavior


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