International Relations

Category: Questions


DB3: Positivism Options Menu: Forum
Select one of the following questions:

Should criminologists continue to look for biological causes of criminality? What are some of the implications that would be associated with studying biological causes today?

Think how deterministic theories have shaped modern views on crime. Discuss some of the ways Lombroso’s perspectives on crime are still used today.

What can we learn from identical twin studies? Any new and interesting findings? Thoughts?

What about IQ and crime and/or personality and crime?

Do psychological approaches help us understand terrorism? Why and how? Please explain and provide example.

SESSION 6: Anomie, Modernization, Social Strain Theory (Oct. 9, 2020)

Emile Durkheim’s Theory of Crime; Modernization theory; Anomie

Social Strain Theory; Robert K. Merton and Anomie in American Society

Cohen’s Middle Class “Measuring Rod”; Cloward and Ohlin’s Typology of Gangs

The Decline and Resurgence of Strain Theories

Agnew’s General Strain Theory; Messner and Rosenfeld’s Institutional Anomie Theory

Required reading for Session 6

Bernard, T.J., Snipes, J.B. & Gerould, A.L (2019). Vold’s Theoretical Criminology. New York: Oxford University Press. (Chapter 6 & Chapter 7.)

Weisburd, D. (2012). Bringing Social Context Back Into the Equation. Criminology & Public Policy, 11(2), 317-326.

Agnew, R. (2006). General Strain Theory: Current status and directions for further research. In F.T. Cullen, J.P Wright & K.R. Blevins (Eds.), Taking Stock: The Status of Criminological Theory—Advances in Criminological Theory, Volume 15. New Brunswick, NJ: Transactions Publishers, pp. 101-123.

Further readings (optional):

Original: Merton, K. R. (1938). Social Structure and Anomie. American Sociological Review, 3, 672-682.

Original: Cloward, R. (1959). Illegitimate means, anomie, and deviant behavior. American Sociological Review, 44, 588-608.

Original: Agnew, R. S. (2006). Pressured Into Crime: An Overview of General Strain Theory. Los Angeles: Roxbury.

Videos (optional):

Sociology – Émile Durkheim

You could use these videos as well.

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