Question: Using material from Item A and elsewhere, assess the view that realist approaches offer an adequate solution to the problem of crime. (21 marks)
Item A suggests that "realists regard crime as a real and growing problem". However, left realists and right realists see the causes of crime very differently. Also they both offer different solutions to crime as well.
Right realists see biological differences, socialisation of the underclass and the rational choice to offend as the causes of crime. For example, Wilson and Hermstein put forward a biosocial theory of crime, a combination of biological and social factors. Biological differences make some people innately more prone to commit crime than others. Regarding socialisation and the underclass Murray argues that the nuclear family is the best agency of socialisation. This is because absent fathers mean that boys lack the male role model, making lone parent mothers, ineffective socialisation agents. For Murray, the underclass is the source of crime and undermines social cohesion. Lastly, Clarke agrees with the Rational Choice theory, which claims that the decision to commit crime is simply a choice.
Moving on, right realists advocate a 'zero…