The effects of labelling

  • Created by: Ja11en
  • Created on: 23-03-15 17:56
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  • The effect of labelling
    • Introduction
      • Labelling theorists are interested in the effects of labelling
      • Claim that labelling actually encourages them to become more deviant or criminal
    • Primary and secondary deviance  (Lemert)
      • Primary: Deviant acts that have not been labelled
        • Acts are not organised (moment of madness).
        • Little significance for the individuals status
      • Secondary: Is the result of societal reaction (being labelled)
        • Being labelled can lead to humiliation or excluded from normal society
        • This label becomes his master status
      • Deviant will accept label which leads to self fulfilling prophecy
      • Not the act itself but the hostile reaction by the social audience that creates deviance
    • Deviance Amplification
      • Process where the attempt to control deviance leads to an increase
      • Endless spiral
        • Leads to greater attempts to control it and then produces more deviance again
      • Press exaggeration and distorted reporting creates more panic
    • Labelling and criminal justice policy
      • Studies have shown how increases in attempt to control and punish young offenders are having opposite effect
        • Triplett notes an increasing tendency to see young offenders as evil and less tolerant to minor deviance
      • Logically to reduce deviance we should enforce fewer rules for people to break
    • Shaming
      • Disintegrative shaming
        • Crime and criminal is labelled - offender is excluded
      • Reintegrative shaming
        • Labels the act rather than the actor
    • Evaluation
      • Shows that the law is not a fixed set of rules to be taken for granted
      • Crime statistics are more a record of activity than criminals
      • Too deterministic
      • Emphasis on negative effects gives victim a status
      • Fails to show why they commit the act in the first place
      • Would deviance exist without labelling?


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