Explanation of Crime

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CMY3701- The Explanation of Crime Assignment 1 235580 Introduction Edwin H. Sutherland is thought to be the American father of Criminology. He developed a theory called differential association in 1939 which contains nine principles. He changed his major from history to sociology. Imagine if he had not changed to this, his theory of differential association would cease to exist. He changed the way criminology is viewed today. He believed that criminal behaviour came into effect from learning and communicating with others and not something inherited. He placed no emphasis on the media involvement. Definition Differential association studies the acts of a criminal as learned behaviour. It maintains that crime is the product of environmental influences on individuals who are otherwise psychologically as well as biologically normal (Joubert, S. J., Joubert, E., Ovens, M. 2009). It concentrates mainly on how people learn to become criminals or how they learn to engage in criminal behaviour and has interest in why they become criminals (Wikipedia, 2013). The theory of differential association is very similar to social learning. Social learning is learning that can be attained through many processes, our attitudes are also shaped by various forms of influence (Baron, R.A., Branscombe, N.R., Byrne, D., 2009). Sutherlands first three principles: 1. Criminal behaviour is learnt Sutherland found no evidence that heredity or human nature being involved in causes of criminal behaviour. People are not predetermined to be criminals because their parents were criminals (Joubert et al., 2009). They have to learn to commit crimes themselves. Just like anything in life you have to be taught how to do it, crime is the same you do not simply become a criminal. One would have to be trained or taught how to commit crime. For example if you think of drug dealing or
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