A2 Sociology ethnicty, crime and justice

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Ethnicty and criminlisation

3 main sources to look at for stats on ethnicty and criminlisation:

  • offical stats: blacks are 7x more likely than whites to be stopped and searched they are also 5x more likely to be in prison
  • victim surveys: 'mugging' blacks are more likely to be picked as the offender
  • self report studies: graham and bowling (1995) blacks and whites identical rates of offendings yet asians are lower, not all studies have found this information
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Racism and CJS

1. policing: philip and bowling (2007) allegations of oppressive policing in ethnic minorty areas, including:

-  mass stop and searches, armed raids and death in custody, minorites think they are over policed and under protected

2. stop and search: blacks 7x more likely than whites, asians 3x more likely, these hardly ever result in arresst

- stop and search are explained in ethnic differences in offending, police racism, demographic factors

3. arrests and cautions: 3x more likely for blacks, blacks and asians less likely to recieve a caution

4. prosectuion and trial: CPS more likely to drop cases aganist ethnics than whites and balcks are more likely to choose crown court trial by jury.. trust issues?

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Racism and CJS

5.sentencing and prison: jail sentences are given more to blacks. studies have show that black men are 5% more likely to be jailed and ethnic mins are less likely to be given bail

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Left realism

Lea and Young (1993) ethnic differences in stats releft real difference in the levels of offending

  • crime is a product of rel dep, subc and marganlisation
  • racism led to marganlisation and economic exclusion of ethnic mins
  • media all about materalistic items that ethnic mins can't get legit

Racist policing leads to unjustified criminalisations of individuals

  • if police do act in racist ways it is unlikely to account for the ethnic differences in stats
  • police can't be racist as if they were then they must only be selctive to blacks

Conclude:

1. stats represent real difference in offending between ethnic min groups

2. caused by differences in levels of dep and marginalisation

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Neo-marxism: black crime as a construct

Gilroy: myth of black criminality ---- critical criminology: capatlism is the basis of crime

idea of black criminality is a myth created by racist stereotypes of Asian and blacks

  • these groups are no more criminal than others
  • CJS act on these racist stereotypes
  • the minorites are then criminalised which is why they are high in stats

crime as political resistance: ethnic minorties crime is a form of political resistence aganist the racist society and has its roots based in earlier racism e.g black slaves

  • black and asians in uk come from biritsh colonies but they didn't want to be in the colony
  • when faced with racism they adapt these old ways
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Neo-marxism: black crime as a construct

Hall et al: policing the crisis

in the 70's moral panic over mugggers severed the interest of the capatlist society

  • ruling class can normally rule society through consent
  • times of crisis becomes harder
  • when there was a recession in 70's brought up the issue of black muggers
  • no rise in mugging though, was just used as a cover up
  • then dividing the working class on racial grounds
  • was product of media labelling
  • crisis of capatlism was marganlising the black youth through unemployement and drove to petty crime to survive
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Neo-marxism: black crime as a construct

Bourgois: El barrio

Bourgois studied el barrio in america which was a black hispanic community

discrimination excused these groups from legit opportuinities

  • created an alternative economy that combines legal activites with criminial ones
  • oppostitional subc has developed which rejects mainstream values and provides people with alternative source of self worth
  • subc also provides legit durg use which then creates new addicts who turn to voilent crime to get their drugs
  • this then undermines that traditional family life and community coehsion
  • exclusion from mainstream opportunities so turn to crime to earn a living and a culutre that draws that in to it
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