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

Choose two criminological theories and critically assess their usefulness in enhancing our understanding of one of the following (a) youth crime (b) gender and crime or (c) race(TM) and crime.(TM)

Extracts from this document...


'Choose two criminological theories and critically assess their usefulness in enhancing our understanding of one of the following (a) youth crime (b) gender and crime or (c) 'race' and crime.' Words - 1, 583 Danielle Mc Fall The purpose of this assignment is to develop a greater understanding of the topic Gender and Crime. To gather this information the assignment will be investigating both Biological and Feminist theories in relation to Gender and Crime. The biological theory will investigate the works of Lombroso, William Shedons and other genetic hypothesises, while the Feminist theory will focus on why the feminist theory was introduced, the differences between criminologists understanding of female criminal behaviour and the problems in studying gender in relation to crime. An explanation for criminal behaviour has been studied since the early 17th century through the works of Beccaria and Betham in the famous Classical theory to the sociological theories of the present day. In this assignment biological and feminist theories will be the main focus in relation to Gender and Crime. Biological theorists and theories concentrate on the relationship between biology and crime. One of the first theorists to develop this concept was an Italian prison psychiatrist called Cesare Lombroso. ...read more.


Shedon continued by explaining that some individuals where pure types while others were hybrid as they contained two or three of the body types. Sheldon argued that, "delinquents were characterized by a preponderance of mesomorphs, some indication of endomorph, and a marked lack of etcomorphs." Hale et al (2005:666) He also concluded that this pattern differed in non-criminal populations which supported his theory that there were differences in the physical type of criminals and non-criminals. Shedon believed that he could tell if a human being, either male or female was a criminal by investigating his or her body type and personality traits. Another biological theory which had been studied throughout the twentieth century is the Genetic transmission theory which relates to the passing of genes to the next generation. This is the idea that criminals are born from genetic inheritance, simply stated, born with the criminal gene. Several famous studies have been investigated to try in determining this theory. An example is in the 1920's, where a German physician Johannes Lange began the study of twins where their criminal records were contrasted. Another good example is by Raymond Crowe 1974 and Barry Hutchings and Sarnoff Mednicks 1975 study in the criminal development of adopted twins. ...read more.


Feminist theory has enhanced our understanding of gender and crime because it has modernised the thinking of criminology and opened up a whole new gap in the study of criminology. As explained female crimes in the past where neglected and from the analysis female crimes are just as important in enhancing are understanding of criminal behaviour as much as male crimes. Feminist views have given us a proper analysis of why females commit crimes, rather than just overlooking the process. Also feminist approaches have shown the need for reform in the criminal justice system to make laws more equal between men and women. Finally feminist theories and understandings have surely widened the prospect of support systems for female criminals for example counselling because of the further understanding it has developed. Biological theories have also developed our understanding of gender and crime because it gives us a link between scientific approaches for example 'body type' and 'genetic transmission' in understanding both male and female criminal behaviour. Therefore once the nature and extent of this theory is fully discovered reduction in criminal offending is seen as possible through treatment. Even so the biological theory is limited in enhancing our understanding of gender and crime because it gives a rooted consumption that the criminal is always male. Its concept gives a more tradition outlook on the study of criminology. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Criminology 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 University Degree Criminology essays

  1. Outline and critically discuss the way in which your studies have developed your understanding ...

    suburbs rather than council housing) or the possibility of private schooling. But the way in which society looks down upon teenage mothers, the way they are portrayed in the media, and how some teens can find they are pushed out of social groups because other parents do not want their

  2. Compare positivist approaches to crime with at least two other perspectives discussed in the ...

    During some people's biological evolution process a complication occurs. Due to this complication people carry 'the sperm of crime' to their temperament and they can be distinguished from other people (non-criminals) based upon some physical characteristics known as 'stigmata' (Giotopoulou-Maragkopoulou, 1984:92). Another important body type theory is Sheldon's. Sheldon classified humans regarding their figure and personality into three categories: 1)

  1. Domestic violence. The following essay will concentrate on patriarchal-terrorism (Gilchrist et al. 2004) meaning ...

    regularly aggressively from overcontrolled ones whose strong inhibitions result in violence only in cases of intensive anger arousal. Contrarily, Barrat (1994) views a combination of high impulsivity and anger as the most powerful antecedents of aggression whilst Caprara et al.'s (1994)

  2. prevention of youth crime

    (O`Conner, I. 1997 Pg: 232) What this had achieved is that in an attempt to 'rehabilitate' young offenders, the system stigmatised the youth it was trying to protect into delinquency. (Hogg and Brown 1998 Pg: 193) The second attempt at integrating juveniles into the criminal justice system was the Justice Model.

  1. Outline some of the most important critiques of 'Malestream' criminology.

    the invisibility of women within academic criminology merely reflects a strong patriarchal tradition within the social sciences in general with women's history, experience culture, and politics being peripheral to the 'real issues' prioritised for research, teaching and publication. The treatment of women within the criminal justice system cannot be seen to be equitable to that received by men.

  2. In this Critique I talk about crime prevention, how government schemes have helped in ...

    One important criticism was that the social preconditions in the locality for setting up crime prevention, particularly social prevention, had not been understood. Such were hardest to set up where they were most needed. Neighbourhood Watch schemes were, for example, enthusiastically adopted by middle class communities whose crime rates were

  1. The origins of the criminological imagination lay with C. Wright Mills and his book ...

    The USA stood at a crossroads at how to respond to the violence the revolution of black Americans had caused (Currie 1998). The USA sought to get rid of the social exclusion that was present in the early sixties. The country needed to reduce poverty, create opportunities to work, support under privileged families and the marginalized youth.

  2. Discuss the key features and changes in the history of crime and punishment in ...

    Physical punishments were no longer handed out as they were deemed ineffective. There were also changes to the punishments of young offenders. Up until 1854 young offenders were treated equally to adults, and had the same punishments.

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