Unformatted text preview:

Explanations to common criminal behavior:~Neighborhoods: living in a bad neighborhood can lead to crime.~Parents: Who we are and our personality traits are sometimes tied to how parents treat/raise you~Poverty:~Peers: pressures from friends~Culture: the things we believe inDominant Criminological Theories:~Social Disorganization Theory~Social Bonding Theory~Social Learning Theory*What do all these theories have in common?They all deal with the social aspects of crime.Why?~Sociology:~Behavior is changeable:~Not your fault:~Biology/genetics is dangerous: If it is truly because of genetics, then there is no way to change who you are. Eyesight: saying that I have bad eyesight because of my genes and I can’t do anything, No, I go to the doctor and get glasses. Genetics can be shaped by the society.The study of crime and criminals is guided largely by ideology and disciplinary allegiances.Criminology is supposed to be interdisciplinary?In practice this is not true.Social explanations to crime continue to dominate the discipline of criminologySocial Bonding Theory: Hirschi’s theory developed in 1969- criminologists favorite theory.Attachment, commitment, belief, and involvement- if you have these, you are less likely to commit a crime. People were born innately bad and not innately good.Sociological theories are not necessarily wrong, but in isolation they leave us with an impoverished and incomplete understanding to human behavior.Ex: heart disease? Simply due to social factors? No, bad diet, no doctor, smoking, drinking, genetics.In order to understand the causes of behavior, we need to move away from a monolithic explanation of behavior and examine a range of different factors including:~Biology~Genetics~EnvironmentBiosocial Criminology:How environmental and genetic/biological factors act in combination to create behaviors.What is aggression and crime?~A tendency to exploit or bring harm to others and to disobey common social rules.~Direct Aggression: overt and typically physical. EX: punching, hitting, or inflicting pain. (mostly male)~Indirect Aggression: Covert and typically verbal. EX: gossip (mostly female)*Not all aggression is illegalAntisocial Behavior: stable throughout life?~Is it stable or does it change?~Does not vary based on laws and policiesWhat is Stability?~Stability is a general pattern of offending that persists over time.~A strong linkage among childhood behavioral problems, juvenile delinquency, and adult criminal behavior.Absolute Stability: no change, the way you act today will predict the way that you act tomorrow and ten years from now. No difference over a period of time. EX: groundhog dayRelative Stability: refers to the rank ordering of individuals (correlation analysis) we can rank people on some trait or behavior.~the most criminal today is still going to be ranked most criminal at age 33Behavior is highly stable.~Large literature reviews (meta-analyses) reveal that behavior is highly stable (loeber, 1982; Olweus, 1979)~Our behavior becomes patterned and routine, we are creatures of habit.~Individual differences in antisocial behavior emerge early in the life-course. Some traits are measurable by 6 months of age.~These differences can be very stable across the life-course.~However, most antisocial children do not grow up to be antisocial adults.~Around age 3 personality traits start to become more stable.~ The people that are least likely to change are the ones that are at the extremes.~The people who change most are the ones who are in the middle area.What Predicts Stability?~ Engaging in a variety of antisocial acts (hitting, lying, stealing).~ Extremity of acts (killing animals, inflicting serious pain).~ Early age of onset…. The earlier the onset, the worse the condition.~ Misbehavior that occurs across contexts (home, church, school).~Adult criminal behavior almost requires childhood antisocial behavior~Adult criminal behavior is better predicted by childhood aggression than by any other variable (including family background and social class)Stability and Behavior:~The most antisocial children tend to become the most antisocial adolescents who, in turn, tend to become the most antisocial adults.~High degree of stability in behavior and personality from a very young age through adulthood.What accounts for stability and change?State Dependence: (Sampson and Laub, 1993)Population Heterogeneity: (Gottfredson and Hirschi, 1990)State Dependence:~Stability, according to this position, is the result of the social consequences that emanate from engaging in crime.~EX: what happens to a person who has been convicted of a felony?Social consequences; the loss of social capital.~Crime, therefore, tends to have a snowball effect, wherein engaging in crime immerses an offender into a criminalistic lifestyle that is very difficult to leave~How can you find a good job or pro-social spouse if you are labeled as a convict?Crime Consequences  More crime~Once an individual becomes ensnared in a life of crime, stability is likely to occur.~However, the state dependence perspective recognizes that behavior change is possibleWhat factors promote change/desistance?Marriage and Desistance:~individuals who enter high quality marriages (with a prosocial spouse) are much more likely to desist from crime. But, why?~not all marriages are created equal, like marry like people.~Sampson and Laub maintain that entering into a marriage increases social capital thereby promoting desistance~Warr suggests that marriages cut off people from their friends, losing antisocial friends= desistance. (less time with friends, less likely to get into trouble)~Sampson and Laub also found that the military fosters the desistance process.~gaining lawful, stable employment has also been linked to desistance.Why? more to lose from engaging in crime. You have more to lose being fired from a higher job rather than if you are fired from working at McDonalds.It appears that local like circumstances are an integral component of change/desistance.Social factors, therefore, appear, at least on the surface, to be the main ingredient for behavioral change.Not all criminals that get married will never commit crime again, in fact, many criminals that get married will still commit crimes.Do biology and genetic factors contribute to behavioral change?~yes, but they are not incorporated into the state dependence perspective.~marriage lowers testosterone levels in men.~testosterone levels are high

View Full Document

FSU CCJ 4601 - Human Behavior Chapter 1

Download Human Behavior Chapter 1
Our administrator received your request to download this document. We will send you the file to your email shortly.
Loading Unlocking...

Join to view Human Behavior Chapter 1 and access 3M+ class-specific study document.

We will never post anything without your permission.
Don't have an account?
Sign Up

Join to view Human Behavior Chapter 1 2 2 and access 3M+ class-specific study document.


By creating an account you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use

Already a member?