Right/Left Realism

Mind Map by klross, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by klross almost 5 years ago



Resource summary

Right/Left Realism
1 Right Realism
1.1 Originated in 1970s by James Q Wilson and Ernst Van Den Haag
1.1.1 It was developed as a critique of sociological theory which failed to solve crime.
1.1.2 Negative view of human nature (People are naturally selfish and greedy) Human nature needs social control and have appropriate behaviour
1.1.3 Van den Haag argues it is reasonable for law and order agencies to target the poor
1.2 Right Realists
1.2.1 Believe the solution to crime is the Rational Choice Theory Rational Choice Theory Developed in Clarke and Coleman (1980) Argues that criminals will commit crime if the benefits outweigh the costs Solution is to increase the costs of crime (tougher punishment)
1.3 Anti-Sociological criminology
1.3.1 Right Realists oppose the connection between crime and poverty.
1.3.2 They point out that wealth and crime rates have rising.
1.3.3 Key Factors behind crime increase. Extending the Welfare State Lack of discipline in education Decline in traditional family types
1.4 Selfish Human Nature
1.4.1 Rising crime levels reflect inadequate social control
1.4.2 Permissive attitudes allow self indulgent and anti-social behaviout
1.4.3 The result of this has caused crime like: muggings, graffiti, theft and car break-ins.
1.4.4 Lacking parenting, absent fathers, lack of discipline in schools, cause this behaviour
1.5 Solutions to Crime
1.5.1 Reduce opportunities for offending.
1.5.2 Increase punishments Heavy fines,sentences and Capital punishment
1.5.3 Crime control should fall upon members of the community
1.5.4 Responsible parenting
1.6 'Broken Window Thesis'
1.6.1 James Q. Wilson argues that unless small crime like littering are kept minimal then more anti-social behaviour and serious crime will happen. Argues 3 factors affecting long term crime Number of young males Costs/benefits of crime Inadequate socialisation into norms/values
1.6.2 He says that police should adopt a 'zero-tolerance' policy for even small crimes. Emile Durkhiem's idea that local informal controls are crucial for law and order
1.7 Charles Murray argues that underclass are not integrated into society's norms and values.
1.7.1 He calls deviant subcultural values of the underclass as 'paternaslism'.
1.8 Critique of Right Realism
1.8.1 Infulential on Government policy in USA & UK For example 'zero-tolerance' adopted in New York Some argue it is a lack of investment in deprived areas than incivilities that cause crime to rise. Easy to pick on scapegoats like single parent families. Marxist argue that concentrating on minor crimes than more serious crimes get ignored by authorities. zero-tolerance will shift crime to other areas.
2 Left Realism
2.1 Lea and Young developed left realism in response of right realism.
2.1.1 Sees crime as a real problem for ordinary people
2.1.2 Argues that rising crime rate cannot be explained by the unreliability of social crime statistics. Focus on victims as well as offenders, recongnisng crime is mostly in the inner-city and housing estates.
2.2 Ethnicity and Crime
2.2.1 Lea and Young accepted that there is a real increase in crime by young blacks, Accept that there is institutional racism Black criminality stems from racial discrimination, low wages and unemployment. See Black youth having high aspirations but not able to achieve them.
2.3 Left Realism see origins of crime as three folds:
2.3.1 Relative deprivation Lea and Young argue that frustrated between expectations and the reality of lifestyle leads to feelings of relative deprivation. They argue the reality for many young Black males is a choice of unemployment, training schemes. They feel unfairly denied the ‘glittering prizes’ offered to others. This can develop into strategies which can involve deviant and criminal behaviour.
2.3.2 Marginalisation Lea and Young argue that marginalisation means the process by which certain groups find themselves on the edge of society. White and Black working-class youth often feel alienated by schools, unemployment, low-wages, and the police.
2.3.3 Subculture Subculture of young blacks is different from their parents who accepted their marginalised position in society. Black youth subculture has high material expectations and aspirations: money and status symbols like flash cars, etc. Black youth is so closely enmeshed in values of consumption, style and wealth, this is precisely why they engage in crime because of blocked opportunities.
2.4 Policing Problem
2.4.1 Kinsey, Lea and Young identify a number of problems with contemporary policing. The police too often resort to 'military policing' as a method of solving crime through 'stop and search' policies. This alienates the community from them, recently the Muslim community. Argue that to improve this relationship the public should have more say in shaping police policy.
2.5 Square of crime
2.5.1 Shows concern for victim patterns and formal and informal factors. Argue that crime can be only understood by interrelationships between four elements. State, offender, informal controls and victims.
2.6 Jock Young also has a generic theory to explain the recent growth in crime. He argues that late modernity is making crime worse in a number of ways:
2.6.1 Greater uncertainty and instability in most aspects of life.
2.6.2 People’s desire for Immediate and personal pleasure.
2.6.3 Less consensus about moral values.
2.6.4 A breakdown of informal social controls
2.7 Critique of Left Realism
2.7.1 Key strength is recognition of multiple causes of crime. Focuses on victims as well as offenders is good, adding another dimension to our understanding of crime. However, Relative deprivation or marginalisation cannot explain the motive behind offender’s actions e.g. white-collar. Equally not all people in relative deprivation turn to crime. It assumes that society’s values break down crime become more likely a return to anomie theory and a view not too distant from Right Realism.
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