Turning to crime - upbringing

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Sutherland - learning from others

  • individuals learn criminal behaviour by becoming part of a close group to whom offending has become the norm
  • some subcultures in society are organised so that the norms are favourable towards criminal activity whilst others are organised so that the norms are favourable to such law violation
  • if individuals come into contact with attitudes in favour of criminal activity then they will consider crime acceptable - learnt behaviour
  • may learn from their social groups specific techniques for breaking the law
  • theory can explain why any individual may learn and so be drawn into a life of crime and why crime rates are higher in some neighbourhoods than others.

Farington - disrupted families

  • whether delinquent and criminal behaviour can be predicted, why it begins and why adult crime often ends when men reach their 20s.
  • boys interviewed at home and school, then research office when older


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