Crime can only be a social problem if it breaks rules in the social system. The human societies often have different minds to what a social problem consists of. There are many known definitions of social problems throughout different societies and worldwide. Criminology in the narrow sense is concerned with the study of the phenomenon of crime, and of the factors or circumstances which may have influence on or be associated with the criminal behaviour and the state of crime in general. The understanding of criminology is to see social problems and cause of the crimes and how they have affect on people in society.
DISCUSS THE PROBLEMS IN MEASURING AND DEFINING CRIME AND DEVIANCE. INTRODUCTION This paper will discuss the problems faced whilst trying to define and measure crime and deviance whilst also explaining the differences and relationship between crime and deviance. Criminologists have created means of measuring crime which this paper will explore and identify problems which will occur during the recording of crime and will explore influences on crime and crime statistics. DEFINING CRIME AND DEVIANCE Defining crime or deviance is diverse amongst the many different cultures, history and from one social context to another (new texts pg 138) which causes a big problem whilst defining and measuring crime or deviance as what is believed to be criminal or deviant behaviour in one society may be seen as legal or normal behaviour by another society. There are many theories relating to deviance and crime with each theory illustrating a different aspect of the procedure by which people break rules and are classed as deviants or criminals.
Official statistics is the name given to the numbers of crimes reported to or unveiled by the police themselves, which lead to a conviction, caution or are dealt with in some formal way by the law. Only offences which are dealt with by one of the above are actually recorded in official statistics. These offences can vary from minor incidents such as a window being broken to, an offence of a more serious nature such as rape or murder. These are social problems that are constructed by society, something that goes against the 'normal' runnings of society. The statistics can give us an understanding as to the levels of these crimes and as to why or where they are most likely to occur.
A social institution is an organization that has a particular purpose or goal used to refer to the positions, the roles, or the relations among individuals in a community persuading or influencing him or her to participate in achieving an objective. For example schools are an institution in which students come together to learn, and the teachers come together to educate students. Criminal organizations may be considered a social institution because criminals come together to organize and plan criminal activities. Social institution identifies a community of social activity and not its legal boundaries (Lyman & Potter, 2007). Organized crime can be applied to social institutions in various ways.
Victimology: A Study of Crime Victims 1 Victimology is an important element in the process of learning about crime victims, the needs of the victims, and even about the perpetrator of the crime. It identifies the victims, reveals their physical and mental state before and after the crime, their social interactions, and ideas as to why they were a victim. Victimology does not give the reasons why a particular person is chosen by an offender, however it will give general overview of victim selection (Petherick, “Victimology” 2010) The definitions of victimology vary in the use of words within the definition, such as victim, crime victim or behavior of crime victim. Victimology as an academic term containing two elements; the Latin word “victima” which translate into victim and the Greek word “logos” which means a system of knowledge (Dussich “Victimology ‘Past, Present and Future’”2000). In it’s simplest definition, victimology is the study of the victim or victims of a particular offender (Wallace & Roberson 2011: 3).
Crime Statistics “Crime statistics is an attempt to provide statistical measures of the crime in societies.” Unfortunately, because some crime is secretive, some unknown because they are never reported, therefore the results become very inaccurate. There are several ways on how these statistics are received, such as, hospital of insurance records, household surveys, and reports for several law enforcement agencies. Many countries gather their statistical crime information and it becomes of interest to international organizations such as, Interpol and the United Nations. Places like the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Home Office in England & Whales, are the agencies that publish these crime statistics and compile the statistics based on the different crimes that have been reported. Statistics are usually collected on based on three categories: Offenses, the breach of law; Offenders, those who commit the offenses; and the victims, the ones who are offended against.
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.
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.
Typology for crime uses defined characteristics, such as motivation, situation, behavior-both victim and offender-, and aspects unique to the offense. 2. What are the key issues to be considered in explaining patterns of homicide? * When trying to explain homicide, socio-demographics need to be examined. Using cultural norms, weapons availability, gang activity, geographic region, victim-offender relationship, as well as individual characteristics as considerations can give a much greater idea of statistics and causes.
Consensus theory means any area dealing with a problem where several objects must be simplified to one. This paper will research thorough back ground of crime including the main themes associated with crime, why crime is committed, the four main perspectives of crime (legalist, political, psychological, sociological), and how society perceives crime. This paper will also research how consensus is formed among society and what factors play a role. Research as to how deviance, social norms and theories all have a vital role in how society form consensus. A clearer understanding of consensus theorists will be examined and the ideologies behind these individuals.