left realism part 2


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  • Created by: Nicole
  • Created on: 18-04-11 14:07

Lea & Young (1984) – Explaining crime

 Lea & Young attempt to explain why people turn to crime using three key 


 Relative Deprivation:

  • It is not deprivation as such that causes people to commit crime, but 

whether they see themselves as deprived in comparison with others

  • In modern societies, advertises stress the importance of economic 

success and promote middle-class lifestyles

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  •  L and Y argue that rising crime is partly the result of rising expectations of 

high standards of living, combined with restricted opportunities to 

achieve this

 Subculture:

  • Working-class deviant subcultures emerge as group solutions to 

problems arising from social inequality, though they take different forms 

over time and in different contexts

  •  These can act as motivators for crime, as some working-class 

subcultures see offending as acceptable behaviour

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  •  Second-generation West Indian immigrants’ sub cultural solutions 

include the Rastafarian and Pentecostal religions as well as ‘hustling’ 

for money and street crime.

 Marginalisation:

  • Some groups find themselves politically and economically ‘on the edge’ 

of society

  •  This is due to factors such as poor education achievement, 

unemployment, and lack of involvement in community organisations

  •  The key to avoid marginality is employment, as workers have clearly 

defined objectives, such as higher wages

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