The agents of socialization include the family, educational institutions, peer groups, the media, the workplace, and the government. Let's consider the following scenario related to social control theory
Max, who is a young boy of 17, belongs to the poorer section of society and has been unable to obtain a job for the last year. He has regular fights with his parents due to which he leaves the house. Instead of associating himself with peers who could guide him down a better path, he associates himself with drugs and alcohol. In relation to this scenario, discuss the following:
?Propose two ideas to either control or improve upon the problem of homelessness in America. How will your ideas improve the situation?
According to rational theories
, crime is a calculated action. Criminals conduct a cost/benefit analysis of a crime as to whether it would prove beneficial for them and evaluate the risks involved in it. On the basis of this evaluation they make a decision as to how to go about committing the crime. Provide a list of at least six crimes that you think only someone who lacks reason is capable of committing. If there are indeed crimes that are committed by individuals who are unable to reason, then, should these criminals be convicted or should no action be taken against them by the criminal justice system. Why? Justify your answer with well-corroborated reasons.
In looking at crime rates between men and women, Otto Pollak (1950) has offered an explanation of chivalry hypothesis (also known as the paternalism hypothesis). The chivalry hypothesis basically says that the low crime rates are a reflection of the leniency of male police officers or other criminal justice system professionals when they deal with female offenders. For example, females are more likely to receive "discretion" and therefore screened out of the criminal justice system at the point of arrest. In direct opposition to the chivalry theory
is the convergence hypothesis. The convergence hypothesis suggests that females may in some ways be "catching up" to their male counterparts in the criminal justice system as offenders.
?Since my last name begins with L, argue that the Chivalry Hypothesis is a reason why the crime rate is different for males than it is for females (especially juvenile girls).
?Explain the particular crimes/delinquent acts where this is the case.
?Provide at least two suggestions on ways to reduce the likelihood of this occurring.
Social control theorists try to answer the question of why people conform instead of why people deviate.
According to Hirschi (1969), there are 4 bonds in social control theory
. These include:
?Attachment to parents, peers, or school
?Commitment to conventional lines of action
?Involvement in conventional activities
?Belief in a common value
If you are asked why people join gangs, how would you answer this using social control theory
? What other theories
could help explain gang membership? How can the social control theory
or any other theories
help us to reduce gang membership? Provide a rationale and examples for your answer by justifying your answer with scholarly resources.
According to the social learning theory
, you need to teach juveniles about long-term rewards and delayed gratification to reduce crime. Without this socialization, juveniles will tend to achieve short-term rewards that are beneficial in the short term but harmful in the long run. To achieve these awards, the juveniles might take to crime.
According to Williams and McShane (2003), learning theories
tell us that behavior will be based on immediate rewards and punishments unless discriminative stimuli are developed to reinforce the presence of future rewards. These discriminative stimuli act as cues or signals which help determine the appropriateness of a particular behavior. Our environment and social circle play a major role in developing these discriminative behaviors.
How does one develop discriminative stimuli? Why? Justify your answer with scholarly reasons. Describe at least three things that schools, families, sports teams, etc. can/should do to help develop these stimuli? Why? Provide real-life examples to explain your answer.
Hirschi, T. (1969). Causes of delinquency. Berkeley, CA: University of California
Pollak, O. (1950). The criminality of women. Philadelphia, PA: University of
Williams, F. P., & McShane, M. D. (2003). Criminological theory
. (4th ed.). Upper
Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
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