Crime and Deviance - Ethnicity

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In the UK and The US there are a disproportionate amount of Black people in prison.

Broadly speaking sociologists have taken two approaches to this

  • The legal system isn't fair and Afro-Caribbeans are simply victims of racism and discrimination
  • The legal system is generally fair but Afro-Caribbeans are imply more criminal than whites in some areas, and the reasons for their criminality need to be explored

The legal system is biased

Social Action Theory, Marxism

Hall and Gilroy

Argued that young black men were no more criminal than whites and that the legal system was biased


Shows the negative lebelling f black men in the US in his 1994 study of the RDU

Philips and Bowling

Argue that the UK criminal justice system is racist. They point to the higher number of stop and searches of black men (5-8…


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