“It Is a Person’s Environment That Leads Them Into Criminal and Deviant Behaviour.”

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“It is a person’s environment that leads them into criminal and deviant behaviour.” This essay will firstly define deviance and crime in sociological terms. It will explore how deviance and crime are defined and who defines them as such. Considering the moral and legal aspects of deviance and crime. Secondly this essay will consider some of the many ideas and perspectives around the reason for and the continuation of crime and deviance in society. As a conclusion this essay will take into consideration whether the perspectives outlined are external or internal in their description of reasons for crime and deviance and try and determine the relevance of the arguments. Deviance according to Jary and Jary in the Dictionary of Sociology (2000) is any social behaviour that departs from that regarded as normal or socially acceptable in a society or social context. Deviance will include criminal behaviour; but it's scope is far wider than just criminal behaviour. Deviant behaviour is not necessary criminal - according to the legal code of a given society, culture or country. Crime is defined as an infraction of criminal law. Jary and Jary (2000). In Sociology: A New Approach, Haralambos et al. (1986) crime is further defined as an act which breaks the law and is subject to punishment. Crime and deviance are culturally defined and therefore relative, as a culture evolves so do definitions of both deviance and crime. These changes are likely to change at different rates. Crime, which is defined legally, often taking longer to evolve and keep pace with social evolution - due to the time taken to write, pass and enact new criminal laws. It is the society within which a person live which defines whether an action or behaviour is deviant. An act which is deviant at one time in a society may in previous or later times not be considered such. An example from Sociology:
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