• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Environmental factors that affect offenders and victims.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Environmental factors that affect offenders and victims include the physical, social, family, community, economic, cultural and political environments in which individuals live. Impoverished physical, social and family environments have long been considered to be primary determinants of the development of criminal behaviour. Living in poverty, isolation from social support and being raised in a violent family are examples of these types of environmental risk factors. A lack of community cohesion in one's neighbourhood, poor economic conditions in society and conflict-ridden cultural and political environments are also potential risk factors for crime - both for offending and victimisation. The rate of unemployment, extent of use of the welfare system and the varying levels of education in society can all influence the prevalence and nature of crime. For example, higher rates of unemployment can have an impact on levels of crime. An important environmental element relates to geographical location. The profile of crime varies across geographical areas at both the macro and micro level. These differences in crime can be linked with regional differences in social, demographic and economic conditions. Understanding the nature of these links is important because it can shed light on how to manage and prevent crime. Robert Park and Ernest Burgess introduced an ecological analysis of crime causation. ...read more.

Middle

They maintain that at times delinquents participate in conventional activities and shun such activity while engaging in criminal acts. Such a theory proposes that delinquents disregard controlling influences of rules and values and use these techniques of neutralisation to weaken the hold society places over them. In other words, these techniques act as defence mechanisms that release the delinquent from the constraints associated with moral order. Howard Becker makes the point that deviance is not a quality inherent in an act but rather society's label or reaction to the act defines it. No action is criminal or deviant in itself, it only becomes so if society defines it as such. Therefore labelling is where certain groups or individuals categorise particular behaviour or individuals. A deviant or deviant act is one that has been labelled as such. This raises the issue of who has the power to impose their norms and values (their definitions of right and wrong) on others. Giddens states that the labels applied express the power structure of society - they tend to applied by the wealthy for the poor, men for women, and ethnic majorities for minorities. The labelling of an individual as a criminal or a deviant tends to reinforce that view on themselves and they act accordingly. ...read more.

Conclusion

There are two schools of thought on how women are viewed: women who commit crimes as poor, benighted creatures who are victims of male oppression; women as being more cunning and craftier than men. The influence of the women's movement in the 1960s changed many attitudes towards female crime. The major focus of their research and criticism involved men's oppression of women. As a result, many laws were introduced and changed to allow for the role of women's victimisation. However, there are different schools of thought amongst feminists today. Some continue to focus on women's oppression and victimisation. However, feminist criminologists like Hilary Allen and Patricia Pearson claim that women's crimes have been medicalised. They claim that women's crimes should be taken as seriously as men's crimes. Defenses given for male and female crime should be equal, if possible and that females should be held responsible for their crimes and punished appropriately. Feminist critiques note that women are usually absent from crime theories, which are normally based on studies conducted by men. These theories have been offered as a generalisation, which, as only one sex is taken into account simply cannot be taken as a sound view. Feminists working within criminology are also keen to expose women's experiences of victimisation in such situations as domestic abuse and in doing so have also exposed the extent of such hidden crimes. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Crime & Deviance section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Crime & Deviance essays

  1. Sociological Theories on Crime and Deviance

    Left realists argue this approach neglects the real victims - working class people who suffer at the hands of criminals. Part of the left realists project is to recognise there has been real increases in crime since the 1950's, especially working class crime.

  2. Assess The Contribution Of Control Theory To Our Understanding Of Crime And Criminality

    self control tend to show themselves in the absence of nurturance, discipline, or training. (Gottfredson and Hirschi 1990) The family environment plays an important role in ensuring the child adheres to social norms and non deviant acts. According to Gottfredson and Hirschi the minimum conditions for adequate child rearing are

  1. Evaluate the Two approaches (FBI and David Canter) to the profiling of offenders.

    Canter claims this method is more valid than sensational interviews whose validity is suspect. Hollin (1992) suggested that the British model of profiling is based on the principle of "bottom up" type processing, looking at cognitive behavioural models. The profile depends on analysis of existing evidence to identify specific similarities between offence and offender characteristics.

  2. Assess the right realist view that crime is the result of biological rational factors ...

    However, these people who get into a good school will learn better core values than people who cannot afford to get into school due to material deprivation. So an informal control of better housing and education would be a good way to sort out his material deprivation which is socialising these 'criminals' into deviance.

  1. How far does Becker's account (The Outsiders 1963) of the processes underlying the selective ...

    crime, perhaps few individuals are affected, and that explains the lack of whistle blowing, but nonetheless there are effects, financially and physically of this white-collar crime. These include effects on employees, for example health and safety problems, in the form of fatalities and injuries.

  2. Discuss, critically evaluating the ways in which positivist ideas have found expression in explanations ...

    By using Lombroso's classifications, the option was available for predictions to be made as to which of the offenders posed the greatest threat to society and who was predisposed to commit crime, therefore deserving precious prison space. His theories were also popular with the government as it excused them from

  1. The effect of appearance on the percieved criminality of young individuals

    The first style of clothing will include hooded sweatshirts, baseball caps, branded sportswear such as tracksuits and ostentatious gold jewellery; this will be referred to as "street wear" throughout the study. The second style of clothing will consist of formal wear, tuxedos/suits for the males and evening dresses for the females.

  2. Bullying in High Schools

    Other studies suggest that girls are twice as likely than boys to be the victims of bullying and that covert bullying occurs more frequently in that of girls (Smith, Talamelli, Cowie, Naylor, & Chauhan, 2004; Reid, Monsen, & Rivers, 2004).

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work