C+D: Topic 4 Realist Theories : Left realism

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  • Left realism
    • It developed in the 80's, its key figure - Jock Young
      • It deleoped due to right realism influence
      • It developed as a response to serious rising crime and finding practical solutions
    • Taking crime seriously
      • Central idea behind it is that 'crime is a real serious problem - it affects the victims the most
      • Traditional marxists : crimes of the capitalist class
      • Neo-marxist: romanticise w/c criminals as robin hoods - but w/c people victimise their fellow w/c
      • Labelling theorists: see w/c criminals as victims of labelling
      • Jock Young; it has led to aetiological crisis
    • Causes of crime
      • Relative deprivation : Lea and Young - it is the main cause of crimes
      • Subculture : Merton, Cloward and Ohlin, A.K.Cohen
        • Theodicy of the dispriveledged
        • Ken Pryce: criminals still have the same goals as society
        • Young: there are areas in the USA that have gucci, prada but are poor...they get it through illegitimate means
      • Marginalisation
        • The most marginalised group are young, w/c, ethnic minorities
        • Those that are not marginalised have means to achieve, vice versa.
        • Some marginalised resort to violence/deviant acts
    • Late modernity, exclusions and crime
      • Young: we are now living in a stage of insecurity, instability and crimes unlike in the past.
      • There are huge differences between pre/late and post modernity (show them)
      • There is a growing contrast between 'cultural inclusion' and 'economic exlusion'
        • Media saturated late modern society = cultural inclusion
        • Greater emphasis on leisure = higher expectations for a 'good life'
        • Despite ideology of meritocracy = the poor are excluded from opportunites to get higher in society
    • Tackling crime
      • They say we must improve policing to tackle crimes
      • Policing and control
        • Kinsley, Lea and Young: policing rate of 'clear -up' is too low = inaccurate
          • Police are not playing the right role they should be playing in spciety
        • Police depend on the public 90% of the time to give them criminals and issues to deal with
          • Policing must be made accountable to all members of the public
        • Police are loosing support of the public, esp. ethnic minorities
          • one can link to stop + search and the code a rules ebing breached by police
        • Military policing must stop as it makes indivuduals fear speaking to police
          • Crime stopping/watching cannot be left to police alone but 'multi agencies' e.g. local councils, victim support etc.
      • Tackling the structural causes
        • Left realists do not see improving policing and control as a way of reducing crimes/ main solution
        • Young says society must first deal with inequalities, discrimination/ provide decent jobs etc.
      • Left realism and governemnt policies
        • Had more influence of governemnt policies that right realists
        • Their veiws link to that of the labour party
        • 'Tough on crime, tough on causes of crime;
        • New labour: firmer approach on crimes e.g ASBO
        • Young calls it doomed. nostalgic attempts to get back the 'golden age' - 50's


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