The main idea of the chivalry thesis is this prospect that men are socialised to act in a way more chivalrous – or gentlemanly – toward women so they end up convicting men more than women. Otto Pollak (1950) argued that women’s crimes are less likely to end up in official statistics due to the fact that “men don’t like to accuse or punish women” so the criminal justice system is more lenient toward them. The chivalry thesis can be supported by the work of Graham and Bowling who used self-report studies and found that men still commit more crimes than women although the gap is now smaller. They also found that women are more likely to be cautioned whereas men are more likely to be arrested. Nevertheless, the chivalry thesis also has many criticisms including results from a study carried out in a
In their view, crime is caused by a combination of biological and social factors. o Biological differences between individuals make some people innately more strongly likely to commit crimes than others. E.g. Personality traits such as aggressiveness, extroversion, risk taking, and low impulse control put some people at greater risk of offending. o Wilson and Herrnstein also argue
Mednick et al. have studied criminal convictions of over 14,000 people who have been adopted and created greater evidence to suggest that biology had more access over their behaviour. To support this theory further, Bohman reproduced Mednick et al’s study by analyzing the percentage of sons to with a biological parent with an existing criminal record to boys with an adoptive parent with a criminal record. Bohman also concluded with the fact that the genetic factors were more eloquent compared to the environmental influences. The psychological assumption of crime suggests that negative expectations influence certain individuals to execute in a criminal way as their stereotypes change their social interactions.
(Ferris, David, August 25, 2013) Hormones are not determined by the environment but instead biologically. Hormones can have a huge influence on emotions and this can impact criminal behavior. Hormonal imbalances can be a cause of aggression, which can turn into acts of violence or property damage. Crimes such as sexual abuse have also been linked to hormonal imbalances. Pedophiles are more commonly known for this type of behavior, according to a retired Detective, Pat Kehoe, who used to work for the New York Police Department in the Brooklyn sex crimes squad.
One of these theories is the Choice Theory. According to the text book, Criminal Justice in Action, Choice Theory is when criminals weigh the benefits of the crime they want to commit to the tragic costs. If in the end the if the criminals benefits over weigh the costs he or she is more likely to commit the crime (pg.31). Most crimes are committed because of the rewards that come along with it. The rewards can involve money or even a sense of gratification according to sociologist Jack Katz in the text book Criminal Justice in action when said “’rewards’ of crime may be sensual as well as financial.
3. Biological- theories that claim that your biological inheritance or genes may have an influence on your criminal behaviour. Biological theory; William Sheldon Body Shape Theory (1897-1998) William Sheldon’s work originated from Cesare Lombrosso’s work. Lombrosso looked at a large amount of prisoners and concluded that a person’s character could be determined by the shape of their skull and other physical characteristics; he believed that criminals were less evolved than normal people. This is no longer a satisfactory explanation of crime, this is because William Sheldon didn’t think this was a valid theory and wanted to get more in depth and produce a valid theory.
Eyesneck conducted his own research on prisoners and concluded that being high in any 3 can lead to criminal activity but more so neurotosism and psychosism. He argues there is a mirror neuron in people which enables you to sympathies and feel other peoples feeling, he argues that a lack of it means you find it hard to connect emotionally with others, something he sees could lead to criminal activity. Farmington et al reviewed a number of studies and found that offenders scored higher than a control group on psychotosism and neurotosism but not extroversion. Eyes neck believed people with high neurotosism scores would have difficulty learning socially appropriate behaviors through normal means of reinforcement and punishment. However Blackburn critiques Eyesneck saying it's unclear to what psychotosism is measuring it appears to be linked to psychopathic tendencies but not consistently.
Another major point is that our justice system shows more sympathy for criminals than it does victims. DNA testing and other methods of modern crime scene science can now effectively eliminate almost all uncertainty as to a person's guilt or innocence. Prisoner parole or escapes can give criminals another chance to kill. This contributes to the problem of overpopulation in the prison system. Has one ever thought of the victim’s family when the whole court cases are going on?
Cesare Lombroso (CL) was a Psychiatrist that believed that criminals had common facial characteristics and that they were “born criminals” which he also referred to as “atavisms”. His theory was that genetic factors or abnormalities that are inherited influence individuals to commit crime and that it was the individuals destiny to become a criminal`. This can be identified through the shape of their skulls, large ears and lips, long arms and a flattened nose. He also believed that men were more likely to commit crime than woman as they were more narrow-minded of their interests. CL theory has been largely criticised as it is very much descriptive based rather than experimental.
The theory claims that learning crime takes place through observing people (like peers, parents and so on), from there if the person if exposed to more pro-criminal attitudes than anti-criminal attitudes then they are more likely to offend. This was supported by Farrington who carried out a longitudinal study of 411 boys from deprived areas from ages 8 till 50years. After the study, they found out that criminality developed in a context of inappropriate role models and dysfunctional systems of reward and punishment. Although this study seems to show that criminality develops from the environment methodological issues have to be taken into account. A limitation using a longitudinal study is that participants might withdraw from the study which might be an under representative of how criminality is measured.