How Can Criminal Behaviour Be Learnt from Others

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How can criminal behaviour be learnt from others? (10) Our surrounding environment and those around us have always been key influences on how we behave. Seeing other behave in the ways they do forces us to learn this behaviour and then maybe even imitate it ourselves. This can be the case for all behaviours, even criminal behaviour. Bandura’s experiment on children being exposed to aggressive behaviour and therefore imitating this behaviour is somehow evidence to show that on some occasions, behaviour can be learnt. There are many different ways people can learn criminal behaviours from other people, for example having a sibling that always steals, or having a aggressive father who uses physical harm in order to control people. Being exposed to behaviour like this in everyday life and when people you love or may respect, like your family are portraying this behaviour, then this may be seen as the norm for people and they may think it is okay to imitate this behaviour. There have been many different studies and theories into how upbringing can influence people into turning to crime. For example Farrington conducted an experiment into how disrupted families can affect how likely someone is to turn to crime, and they found that most participants defined as ‘chronic offenders’ shared the same or similar characteristics, for example convicted parents, delinquent siblings and young parents. Other studies include Wilkstrom and Tafel, who conducted a study into poverty and disadvantaged neighbourhoods and Sutherland’s theory into the 9 principles of criminology. People learning criminal behaviour from others can depend on the environment and people that are around them. If people see it every day then they will get used to this and they can sometimes, not know any better which implies not having a real sense of moral right and wrong. This is affect people in the future
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