Social Process and Social Development Theory Paper
CJA/314 – Criminology
University of Phoenix
May 14, 2012
Social Process and Social Development Theory
There are several components of social process theory. Social process theories view criminal and deviant behavior as mechanisms which have evolved and have been learned through societal interaction. The three primary classes of social process theory include: social control theory, social learning theory and social reaction theory. The “Tent City, Arizona” video represents the element of criminal behavior which is learned societal interaction. An explanation of how the video represents the element of criminal behavior which is learned through societal interaction is to follow.
People often wonder as to the reasons and motives for why criminals commit crimes. The social process theory provides an explanation for certain behaviors based upon environmental influences. The “Tent City, Arizona” video points to certain criminal behaviors being learned through social interaction.
“Tent City, Arizona” was opened 1993 by Sheriff Joe Arpaio was able to get several military tents. The locations of the tents were in an area adjacent to one of the existing Maricopa County Jails in Phoenix, Arizona. Sheriff Arpaio decided that he was not going to release any inmates because of jail overcrowding and as a result decided to house them in tents as an alternative to releasing them.
The idea that different types of criminals are housed together lends to the possibility that criminals can hone their criminal “skills” while incarcerated. When criminals are incarcerated in jail or prison, generally tax dollars are used to sustain them. In many institutions around the United States it may seem as if the inmates are living in conditions far better than what they should be. “Tent City, Arizona” is not an example of a system where people are living in conditions beyond what they should be as...