Similarities and Differences in Sociological Theories of Crime Sociological theories of crime contain a great deal of useful information in the understanding of criminal behavior. Sociological theories are very useful in the study of criminal behavior because unlike psychological and biological theories they are mostly macro level theories which attempt to explain rates of crime for a group or an area rather than explaining why an individual committed a crime. (Kubrin, 2012). There is however some micro level sociological theories of crime that attempts to explain the individual’s motivation for criminal behavior (Kubrin, 2012). Of the contemporary …show more content…
Where these theories differ is their basic concepts of what the actual cause of crime is. Where social conflict theory and social disorganization theory view the causes of crime on a group level, rational choice theory says that crime is caused on an individual level. Likewise, on an even more fundamental level, social conflict theory and social disorganization theory differ in that social conflict theory believes laws regulating criminal behavior are formed out of conflict within a society where social disorganization theory believes laws are formed from a consensus within society.
Sociological theories of crime are very useful, especially in the prediction and prevention of crime. One of their greatest strengths is their ability to explain crime within a certain group or community. However, the fact that the group or area they most often focus on is poor or disadvantages is one of their greatest weaknesses. Sociological theories fail to account for so called white collar crimes and other types of crimes that occur mainly among more wealthy individuals and in more well off neighborhoods. As with psychological and biological theories, sociological theories have their strengths and weaknesses. To truly understand the nature and causes of crime and to be able to prevent it will take an understanding and blending of many different theories.
Simons, R. L.,