AQA A2 Sociology Unit 4 - Crime and Deviance - Social Groups

  • Created by: Amy
  • Created on: 04-05-14 16:05


High number of arrests in black population are due to;

Police racism 

  • Bowling and Phillips - Racial stereotyping - can't identify more likely to say it's a black person
  • Graham & Bowiling - Rates of offending are the same
  • Criticism - Jones & Singer - Blacks are 3.6x more likely to be arrested
  • Racism in society = racism in the police
  • Robert Riener - Canteen Culture - 6x more likely to be stopped and searched 

Large number in the cohort ( make up 2.1% of pop, 19% of prision pop) 

  • Fitzgerald et al - overrepresentation of 14-25 yr olds in age bracket
  • Many crimes are interacial - 42%

Economically Disadvantaged

  • Mayhew et al - Poor background and lower income 
  • Lea and Young - Left realists - socialisation and low income = criminal subcultures
  • Philippe Bourgios - Illegal migrants - alternative economy 
1 of 10


Meserschimdt - gender identity is vital for a sense of self, masculinity is earnt

Hedgemonic MasculinityDominant type, payed employment, hetrosexual, subordination of women, uncontrollable sexuality

Subordinate MasculinityEthnic minorities, lower class, homosexuals - no hedgemonic

Crime masculinity and youth

  • demonstates HM through academic success, even though this gives authority to the teacher
  • Assert masculinity through minor deviance and sporting achievements
  • White working class males - assert masculinity through aggression and deviance
  • Lower class ethnic minorities - masculinity through street gangs
  • Ethinicity and Masculinity - lack resources for HM - Subordinate Masculinity
  • Social class and masculinity - middle class use crime to express masculinity
2 of 10

Masculinity part Two


  • Most men aspire to HM = denies the idea that maleness is complexed
  • Meserschimdt - uses masculinity to explain every crime (Collier - Idea streched too far)

The Crisis in Masculinity

  • Young and Cambell - unemployment in places were physical labour was strong = now facing crisis in masculinity ( desk job is not masculine enough)

Hobbs et al - Night time economy (bouncers)

Assert masculinity through Joy riding

  • Cambell - consumer society, high performance cars are associated with power (police chases)
3 of 10



  • Men commit more crime
  • Men commit more serious offences
  • Men are more likely to reoffend

Females are more likely to be offenders of domestic violence and child abuse

Smart - Male stream criminology (all male based)

  • Sex Role Theory - Sutherland - Genders are socialised differently (Boys risk takers)
  • Sex Role Theory - Parsons - Boys adopt a masculine identity
  • Sex Role Theory - Cohen - Boys without fathers look for toughness  in role models


  • Not biologically based but due to social contruct
  • Parsons sees women as biologically adapted to nurturing role 
4 of 10

Gender part Two

Female crime and Rational Choice - Carlen 

  • Female crimes = of the powerless
  • Often in poverty
  • Harshly supervised and abusive fathers
  • domaince of male partner

Conformity and control - HeidensohnWomens ability to conform

( Doubly deviant, against law and social norms)

Beyond the homeFreedom deviates from social norms, sexual harrasment, control by men

Women are socialised to conform - supervised more strictly and have higher expectations


  • Combines rational choice and conformity
  • Naffine - women passively accept situation they are in
  • The Chivalry Thesis - Hood - Treated differently as they have more to loose
5 of 10

Social Distribution of crime

Working class males are highly represented with only 8% from non manual backgrounds

Strain Theory - Merton - Most disadvantaged can't achieve legitimately

Social deprivation - Young - Marginalisation, poorest have low social bonds with society

Control theory - Agencies of social control are less effective than family or peers

Rational choice theory - Clarke - Benefits outway the costs

Subcultural theory - Cohen, Miller, Cloward and Ohlin - Status Frustration 

Labelling - Becker - Stereotyping by the police ( Chambliss - Saints and Roughnecks)

The Underclass - Murray - Lose morals and culture of dependancy 

Marxists - W/C commit more detectable crimes, white collar is hard to punish 

  • Crimes by other social groups are undetected (exaggeration of W/C crime)
  • doesn't explain why all W/C don't commit crime
  • Lot of crime is unreported
6 of 10

Age and Crime

Peak age for crimes are 15-18 

Youths history of deviance - Razor Gangs  1920's - Mods and Rockers 1960 - Gangs 2000

Roe and Ashe - 22% of 10-25 year olds admitted to commiting to core offences (boredom)

Cohen - Status Frustration - Peers provide and identity which they don't gain in family or school

Miller - Focal Concerns - Toughness,Smartness,Excitement,Fatalism,Autonomy,Trouble

Katz - Edgework - Thrill seekers and persuation = masculinity

Control theory - Weakened social bonds and peer approval

Matza - Drift theory - Drift into and out of gangs (Techniques of Neutalisation)

Police stereotyping of youths - Youths caught are reprimanded 

7 of 10

Crime and Locality

Shaw and McKay - Zonal Hypothesis

  • Zone 2 closest to the city had the highest amount of crime due to social disorganisation.
  • This had high population turnover = subcultures 

Cultural Transition - Deviancy passed on to genorations

Sutherland & Cressy - Criticism

  • Can't have cultural transition or form subcultures as they are not in the place long enough
  • Have differential assocaition - Associate with law breakers 


  • Ignores the idea of choice
  • Unclear on how subcultures are formed

Marshall and Johnson - Close knit rural communities - low crime

Morris - Tipping areas - housing problems = tiped into one area (James Turner Street)

8 of 10

Crime and Locality part Two

Brantingham & Brantingham 1995

  • Urban areas are more likley to be crime genorating as crime attracting

Felson & Clarke - Opportunity Theory

  • Stopping crime = limit the opportunities 

Important policing stratagies = Situational Crime Prevention

  • For Theft - Tagging and Marking to make them hard to steal
  • For Violence - Plastic cups and CCTV

Privatisation of Public Spaces - Shearing and Stenning 

  • Private security firms and bouncers banish undesireables 
  • Leads to a displacement of crime 
9 of 10


Victims of crime - helps detect offenders and identity those most likely to be victims

Patterns - Age, Ethnicity, Class, Poor, teenagers and the elderly have a 1 in 4 chance

Repeat Victimisation - 60% of people have been a victim of crime 

Impact of Victimisation 

  • Physical or Emotional harms
  • Secondary victimisation - treated badly by CJS
  • Fear of Victimisation - Women fear it more than men 

Positivist victimology - Miers ( Victims Proneness to crime

  • Patterns of victimisation, interpersonal crimes of violence, identify victims that have contributed to their own victimisation,

Criticial Victimisation = based on a conflict theory 

  • Structural factors - Patriarchal and poverty place women and the poor at a greater risk

Criticisms - ignores victims that are unaware of their victimisation 

10 of 10


No comments have yet been made

Similar Sociology resources:

See all Sociology resources »See all Crime and deviance resources »