sociology a level

  • Created by: laura2522
  • Created on: 13-09-17 10:48

Crime and deviance, Functionalists revision.

Crime: breaking a written rule

Deviance: behaving against the norms

Norms: a set of ideas/ beliefs which is what is expected of us and is usually agreed by the whole of society (consensus.) for example it’s a norm to not swear in public.

Crime and deviance can change throughout time and place. For example smoking was previously not illegal in public places but now is. Also homosexuality is seen as deviant in some areas but others may even be seen as a crime or norms.

Functionalist’s perspective of Crime and deviance is that it can be beneficial for society as a whole:

Durkheim believes that a certain amount of Crime and deviance is a normal and “integral part of society” and “having a crimeless society is contradictory.” This is because he states that Crime and deviance has two positive functions which are boundary maintenance and adaption and change. Boundary maintenance is when society will come together (integration) and agree on what they will tolerate as a society. Also by a criminal being prosecuted for their actions it re-affirms society of their norms and values. As well as that but by having a particular amount of Crime and deviance in society, it shows that society’s norms are not too strong to create adaption and change. This is because for change to occur it will first be seen as deviant. Therefore Crime and deviance shows that society is healthy. An example of were Crime and deviance has brought integration is after the London riots, member+s of the community came together to clean up their community, or after the Manchester terrorist attacks, there was a concert which showed integration and major incidents will not succeed to divide community’s.

Durkheim also…


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