Labelling theory in explaining crime and

Originating in the mid- to lates in the United States at a moment of tremendous political and cultural conflict, labeling theorists brought to center stage the role of government agencies, and social processes in general, in the creation of deviance and crime. The theory represented both a theoretical and methodological break from the past, and it could reasonably be argued that it was one of the dominant theoretical perspectives in the study of crime and deviance from the late s until the early s. It was also responsible for spurring countless empirical studies over this time period.

Labelling theory in explaining crime and

Once someone is labelled, various consequences occur as described by Lermert. Primary deviance firstly occurs which is when a person breaks rules with little importance. The act has not publicly been labelled as deviant.

A2 AQA Sociology : Mass Media, Crime and Deviance, Theory and Method

Lermert argues that it is possible to seek the causes of primary deviance because perpretrators do not see themselves as deviant and are not apart of organised deviant life. Secondary deviance is the significant consequence of the response of others.

This labelling often causes people to be stigmasted and the label becomes their master status.

Labelling theory in explaining crime and

The change in status may lead to a crisis of self-identity and become a self-fulfilling prophecy, resulting in victims leading a deviant career. Moral entrepreneurs may lead to moral crusades to change the law or to criminalise certain activities.

Becker argues that this has 2 effects: Marxists argue that the rules are enforced in order to benefit the ruling class and the functionalists argue that the laws in democracy reflect the views of the majority of the population.

He argues moral entrepreneurs do this to benefit them and society. Police social control agencies tend to target certain groups based on their stereotypical perceptions of deviance and causes them to be patrolled much more.

Deviance amplification spiral is the idea that attempts to control deviance only increases it the more control, the more deviance. A criticism of the labelling theory is that the emphasis on the negative effects of labelling gives the offender a kind of victim status, this ignores the real victims of crime.

Aker argues that there must be some reason why the label is applied to certain groups.

Labeling Theory - Criminology - Oxford Bibliographies

As long as the labelling thoery fails to explain this, the theory is incomplete and therefore the theory is not useful to explain crime and deviance. Another criticism of the labelling theory is that it is reductionist and deterministic because it assumes offenders are passive victims of their labels, it ignores the fact that some actively choose deviance.

It assumes that once people are labelled, they will become more deviant but the label could make the person less deviance because they choose whether or not they accept their labels.

They may not become a self-fulfilling prophecy which contradicts the labelling theory, and therefore makes it not useful in explaining crime and deviance.

Labelling theory in explaining crime and

Another criticism is that marxists argue that capitalism is not mentioned in this theory. Marxists argue that not all laws are products of moral entrepreneurs, so therefore the theory lacks usefulness because it fails to take into account capitalism.

On the other hand, labelling theory is useful because it provides insight into the labelling process that structural theories cannot. It also shows the importance of stereotyping in understanding deviance and the importance of those in power of defining acts as deviant.

Essay plan - labelling theory

In conclusion, there is a distinct usefulness in the labelling theory because it outlines why some people turn to deviance because of labelling. Some people are simply victims of their labels. However, there are clear criticisms for this approach such as it being deterministic, therefore it is not as useful when explaining crime and deviance.Introduction.

Labeling theory is a vibrant area of research and theoretical development within the field of criminology. Originating in the mid- to lates in the United States at a moment of tremendous political and cultural conflict, labeling theorists brought to center stage the role of government agencies, and social processes in general, in the creation of deviance and crime.

Labeling theory posits that people come to identify and behave in ways that reflect how others label them. It is most commonly associated with the sociology of crime and deviance, where it is used to point out how social processes of labeling and treating someone as criminally deviant actually.

Essay plan - labelling theory.

The usefulness of labelling theory in the study of crime and deviance by `Alice Wealleans on Prezi

Using material from Item A and elsewhere, assess the usefulness of labelling theory in explaining crime and deviance. In summary, labeling theory is a theory that proposes that deviance is socially constructed through reaction instead of action. According to this theory, no behavior is inherently deviant on its.

The labelling Theory of Crime is associated with Interactionism – the Key ideas are that crime is socially constructed, agents of social control label the powerless as deviant and criminal based on stereotypical assumptions and this creates effects such as the self-fulfilling prophecy, the .

Jun 23,  · The labelling theory (Becker) argues that most people commit deviant criminal acts but only some get caught and stigmatised for it. It is argued deviance is a social construction because social groups create deviance by making up rules and selectively enforcing those rules to .

The Labelling Theory - History Learning Site