Labelling theorists believe that 'deviance' is a social construction - Becker (1963)
E.G. killing an individual is not labelled as deviant if it is committed by a soldier at war
What is differential enforcement?
Differential Enforcement refers to the social control agencies (police, courts etc.) tendency to label particular/certain groups as criminal.
Differential Enforcement refers to the idea of individuals being treated the same way, regardless of elements of their identity.
When did Piliavin and Briar coin this term - and what did they find?
1964 - found that the social control agencies (e.g. police, courts) tended to arrest individuals based on pre-existing stereotypes surrounding race, ethnicity, gender, class, manner, time and place.
1963 - all people are treated the same, regardless of elements of their identity.
What perspective does Labelling Theory derive from? and why/how is this?
Interactionism - because they're interested in the INTERACTIONS between the law enforcement agencies and the suspects.
What does Interactionism focus on?
Micro-level, face to face interactions and negotiations, that seek to understanding the meaning behind individual's actions - and how these meanings have been created.
Macro level, structural theory that makes assumptions about the causes of the individual's actions.
What is a typification? And who came up with the concept?
Cicourel (1976) - and it is another word for a 'stereotype'
Becker (1963) - and it is another word for a 'stereotype'
Who, in accordance to Cicourel (1976) are more likely to be stopped, arrested and search as a result of this typification?
Working Class & Ethnic Minority Juveniles - are more likely to be arrested. Once arrested, those from broken homes were more likely to be charged.
Middle Class Juveniles - with parents/significant others able to negotiate on their behalf. As a result of this they are more likely to be charged.
Marxists criticise the theory of Typification by Cicourel (1976) as it fails to explain where these stereotypes had originated from - and overlook the influence of the Capitalist structure of society.
Crime Statistics, in accordance to Cicourel should be approached with caution - and analysed as TOPICS, not as RESOURCES.
Will labelling certain individuals as 'deviant' encourage them to become more deviant? (In accordance to Lemert - 1972)
What is primary deviance?
An act that has been formally labelled as deviant.
An act that has yet to be formally labelled as deviant.
What is secondary deviance?
Resulting from societal reaction i.e. the labelling of that individual as a deviant. In doing so, stigmatisation is often rife - as is the exclusion of them from normal society. This exclusion from normal society, and the label of deviant can often lead to 'deviant' becoming the MASTER STATUS or the CONTROLLING IDENTITY. Difficult to escape/often seek the company of others who support his master status - thus revert to crime.
A self fulfilling prophecy refers to the crisis that an individual may feel as a result of being labelled, and a shift in their self concept whereby they live up to the label. (Secondary Deviance)
Who studied Hippy, Marijuana users as a way to illustrate the process of a self-fulfilling prophecy? And when?
A moral entrepreneur is an individual or a group who believes it is their duty to label particular behaviour and continuing to speed this label throughout society. They seek to influence a particular group to maintain or abide to particular norms.
The Deviance Amplification Spiral refers to the attempt to control deviance leading to it increasing rather than quashing it. This results in greater attempts to control it, thus more deviance occurs and ultimately an escalating spiral.
Is there a similarity between Deviance Amplification and Lemert's idea of secondary deviance?
What are the key principles of Interactionism in accordance to Blumer (1969)
- Our actions are based on the meanings we give to situations/people etc. They are not automatic responses to stimuli.
- These meanings arise from interactions and are to some extent negotiable & changeable.
- The meanings we give to situations are mainly the result of taking the role of the other.
- Human beings are passively responding to the system's needs
- We do not interpret the meanings around us in any such way, instead the meaning we gain is the meaning offered to us from those with the power.
- Human Conduct is not individualistic. Assumptions can be made about the entirety of human being's conduct, as we all interpret situations in the same way.
Blumer argues that although the action we take is partly predictable, because we internalise the expectations of others (so for example, a little boy whose mother openly does not wish for him to eat the last cookie out of the cookie jar may, more often than not, not consume the cookie - due to the expectation by his mother that he won't) - however, there is always some room for choice in how we perform our roles. (he may choose to ignore his mother's wishes.)
What are the 3 Interactionist concepts that Labelling Theorists use?
- Definition of the situation (Thomas)
- Looking glass self (Cooley)
- Career (Becker)
- Social Solidarity
- The Organic Analogy
The criticisms of labelling theory include that it fails to take into account the origins of that label, which may have occurred as a result of the wider social structures such as class inequality. It also fails to explain the consistent patterns of behaviour that humans have.
Who came up with the Dramaturgical Model?
G H. Mead
Goffman assumes that human beings are:
- Passive to the world around them and the influence of the wider social structures
- Are labelled and exist within the label given to us by others.
- Active & Knowledgeable
- Construct our own 'self' by manipulating others.
- Different in social settings than when alone.
- Are social con artists (role-distancing).
What are two key Dramaturgical Concepts?
- Presentation of Self
- Impression Management
- Master Status
Role distancing describes a gap that exists between our 'real selves' and our roles.
They are loosely scripted by society but allow for a lot of freedom in how we play them.
(e.g. the role of a teacher is to educate those you associate with, however - there are numerous ways in which one can seek to play the role of teacher)
Phenomenology is a philosophical term used to describe things as they appear to our senses. We can never really have definite knowledge of our surroundings, as all we know is based on what our minds tell us.
Who applied Phenomenology to the Social World?
Sharing the categories we have created to explain the social world with others is a key part of Phenomenological Theories
A typification, in Schutz's theory, refers to the organisation of our experiences into a world of shared meanings. Contrasts to G H. Mead who argues that the meanings we create are entirely individual.
The meaning of an action is dependent on the context. Not the actual action itself. This means that 'meanings' are unclear and unstable. For example, the meaning of an individual making sexual advances towards you when you have known them for a significant amount of time and are comfortable with them, would be different to an individual with whom you had no previous social contact with approaching you with sexual implications in a club. Same act, different context.
Do typifications make social order possible?
- Yes. They give members of society a shared experience or 'common sense' knowledge that allows us to make sense of our experiences.
- No. Individuals do not seek a shared experience in order to make sense of their world.
What is another term used to describe the concept of 'Common Sense Knowledge?'
- Recipe Knowledge
- Recipe Insight
What does Recipe Knowledge refer to?
Knowing the recipe to Sweet Potato Brownies off by heart. Powerful stuff.
We follow this common sense knowledge like a recipe, with little deviation and without thinking too much - we then use it to make sense of the everyday world.
What does inter-subjective refer to?
A psychological relationship between people, and how our social world can only exist if we share the same meanings. Contrasts G H. Mead whose ideas are criticised for assuming human nature/interaction is on an individualistic basis.
An individual experience had by all, whereby in which we have our own meanings which in no way are similar to others around us.
What does Schutz conclude:
That the world is a social construct that is 'out there' - created by the shared goals of the members of society. In turn, one can co-operate and achieve goals.
That reality is not merely social constructed. It takes on a life of its own and becomes an external reality that ultimately shapes our lives.
Who is the key Ethnomethodological Sociologist?
Does the process of the construction of social order start from the top (e.g. those in power) or from the bottom? (e.g. the everyday citizens)
Those in power. They actively shape our understanding of reality and of society, the common sense knowledge they create is the knowledge that we use to understand the society in which we live in.
The everyday citizens. The bottoms up approach refers to the idea that our everyday life is constructed based on the creation of common sense knowledge that is shared.
In accordance to Garfinkel.. what is the role of the sociologist?
To uncover the socially constructed taken-for-granted knowledge used to construct social reality.
Indexicality refers to the idea of meanings being unclear and unstable. This can lead to a loss of social order because a lack of communication can result in social relationships breaking down.
Reflexivity refers to one's use of the shared common sense knowledge to create social order and meaning, thus preventing Indexicality. Therefore, how can we achieve this?
- Language, through sharing our experiences through speech it confirms the existence of the 'out there' social reality for us. However, essentially all we have done is create shared meanings.
What is the name of the type of experiment Garfinkel used to illustrate the existence of common-sense knowledge?
Breaching. Refers to when one disrupts the expectations of a situation, e.g. acting like a lodger in a parent's house.
One of the criticisms of Ethnomethodology is that they spend a lot of time uncovering trivial taken for granted rules that then don't appear to surprise anybody.
What is the name of Giddens theory that combines both action and structural theories?
Structural Action Theory
What is key term used to describe Gidden's idea that structure and action theories cannot exist without each other?
Duality of structure.
Structure of Duality.
An example of how our actions produce, reproduce and change structure over time is LANGUAGE.
What are the two elements of structure?
- Rules (the norms, customs that govern everyday life)
- Resources (power over others/economic resources)
- THEY CAN EITHER BE REPRODUCED OR CHANGED. TEND TO BE REPRODUCED BECAUSE WE REFER TO EXISTING SOCIAL STRUCTURES THAT EXIST WITHIN OUR KNOWLEDGE.
- WE HAVE A DEEP ROOTED NEED FOR ONTOLOGICAL SECURITY
What does ontological security refer to?
- A need to know that the world is safe, stable and predictable.
- A need to know that the world is unsafe, unstable and unpredictable.
Social change can occur because we actively can change structures through our actions. If we disagree with someone, we can form campaign groups to raise awareness for the subject matter and ultimately alter the structure that exists.