Crime and Deviance

1088 Words5 Pages
This assignment will discuss the problems involved in measuring crime and defining crime and deviance. A crime consists of behaviour that breaks the law, e.g. Murder. Deviance is behaviour that differs from the norms and values of the wider society. Describing crime and deviance is varied across different cultures; history; social situations and place. It will look at the bodies that measure crime and look at the reasons why they are not accurate. There are several differences between crime and deviance, deviance is a violation of the social norms whereas crime is a violation of the laws of the land. Society has no power for deviance but the government can punish with crime. Much behaviour that was seen as deviant in the past has today become a criminal offence, as with crime behaviour seen as criminal is now seen as deviant. Deviance can be criminal or non-criminal, but crime is always criminal in nature. Deviance is not considered as severe as a crime. The punishment of being deviant is not as harsh as an act of crime. Deviance is not breaking the law like crime; it is moving away from a set of standards established by society the social norms. It varies from physical characteristics to peoples beliefs; for example a tribal tattoo on the face of a Maori is deemed the norm in New Zealand but in the UK it would be deemed deviant. Deviance is not always seen as a bad act, as is a crime. It is possible to deviate in a constructive way for example fathers for justice protested to have equal rights in which they were successful. All crime is deviant but not all deviance is crime. Becker stated; “Social groups create deviance by making rules whose infraction constitutes deviance and by applying those rules to particular people and labelling them as outsiders. From this point of view deviance is not a quality of the act a person commits, but rather a consequence of
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