Sociological Perspectives Paper

Submitted By seth2653
Words: 664
Pages: 3

Sociological Perspectives. I plan to analyze the study of crime based on these three perspectives, structural fundamentalism, conflict and interactionism. Each of these perspectives have their own reasoning and theories to back up their concept. The structural functionalist theory is one of the theories used by sociologists in an attempt at explaining the various ways in which sections of the society meet their demands. The theory tries to justify how social institutions meet their various demands in the society. The structural functionalist theory was hinged on the ideas of Emile Durkeim. The functionalist view of crime views crime in a positive way. It states that crime is not a threat to the integrity of the society. Durkeim stated that crime is an integral part of any society. In view of this , a high crime rate can be imagined to strengthen the laws as people continue to adjust to new sets of rules and guidelines. The absence of crime means that the judicial system remains redundant ,it also depicts the absence of morals. A high crime rate however is suggestive of the fact that people are under the yoke of an authoritarian administration , or that there is a significant deterioration in the shared guidelines establishing the boundary between morality and immorality. This situation moreover has negated the positive view of crime in the society , propounded by Durkeim in the Structural Functionalist Theory. The Conflict theorists believe that the broad division of people into these two categories is inherently unequal. They cite the criminal justice system to support their claim. The capitalist class passes laws designed to benefit themselves. These same laws are detrimental to the working class. Both groups commit acts of deviance, but the system the capitalists created defines deviance differently for each group. The criminal justice system judges and punishes each group differently. In addition, the elite can often afford expensive lawyers and are sometimes on a first-name basis with the individuals in charge of making and enforcing laws. Members of the working class generally do not have these advantages. Conflict theorists also look at the types of crimes committed by members of the two classes. The working class is more likely to commit so-called street crime, such as robbery, assault, or murder. Members of the elite are less likely to commit acts of violence but more likely to engage in white collar crime, or nonviolent crime committed by the capitalist class during the course of their occupations. The interactionist perspective defines itself by its strong beliefs in the fact that criminals are defined by their social processes. The social process theory states