Social Control and Self-Control Theories of Crime and Deviance | Taylor & Francis GroupDeviance is any behavior that violates cultural norms. Norms are social expectations that guide human behavior. Deviance is often divided into two types of deviant activities. The first, crime is the violation of formally enacted laws and is referred to as formal deviance. Examples of formal deviance would include: robbery, theft, rape, murder, and assault, just to name a few. The second type of deviant behavior refers to violations of informal social norms, norms that have not been codified into law, and is referred to as informal deviance. Examples of informal deviance might include: picking one's nose, belching loudly in some cultures , or standing too close to another unnecessarily again, in some cultures.
Control theories have dominated criminological theory and research since the publication of Hirschi's seminal work on the social bond. Social control and self-control theorists are unique in suggesting that patterns in criminal behaviors are better explained by variations in social constraints rather than by individual motivational impulses, thus indicating that their main concerns are the explication and clarification of the techniques, processes, and institutions of informal social control. The four major sections of this volume focus on: the similarities and differences among the major contributors to the early developmental stage of social control theory; the central importance of parents, peers, and schools in the creation of informal control mechanisms and their link to crime and delinquency; the theoretical underpinnings of self-control theory, including empirical tests and criticisms; and theoretical integrations of social control and self-control theories with various motivational theories of crime and delinquency. Search all titles. Search all titles Search all collections.
Social control, within sociology, refers to the many ways in which our behavior, thoughts, and appearance are regulated by the norms, rules, laws, and social structures of society. Social control is a necessary component of social order, for society could not exist without it. Social control is achieved through a variety of means, including through social norms , rules, laws, and social, economic, and institutional structures. Without it, chaos and confusion would reign. The primary way through which social order is produced is through the ongoing, lifelong process of socialization that each person experiences. Through this process, we are taught from birth the norms, rules, and behavioral and interactional expectations that are common to our family, peer groups, community, and greater society. Socialization teaches us how to think and behave in accepted ways, and in doing so, effectively controls us our participation in society.
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