Chapter 8: Early Theories of Criminology Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Chapter 8: Early Theories of Criminology Deck (16)
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Initial theories about crime

focus on religious beliefs and superstition; Judeo-Christian ideas of temptation and possession; crime equated with sin


The Enlightenment ideas with crime

rapid social change/scientific revolution; view of the world on experience, not authority; the social contract idea


Classical School/Theory (3)

social contract idea is prevalent; people broke laws because of rational self-interest; punishment should fit the crime (proportional to harm done); deterrence is the main focus


The ideas of Cesare Beccaria

advocated a system severe enough to deter but not so severe that rights were violated


Contributions of the Classical School

led to equality & due process in the legal system as well as the idea of fixed penalties


Weaknesses of the Classical School

circumstances vary widely; deterrence doctrine not as effective as hoped; notion of free rational person is over simplified


Neoclassical ideas

(Gabriel Tarde) sought for more flexibility in the justice system; take individual characteristics and circumstances into account


The Statistical School Founders

Andre-Michel Guerry, Adolphe Quetelet, Henry Mayhew


Statistical School Ideas

crime resulted from natural social causes; studied factors such as poverty, population density and education; major contribution was the discovery of the regularity of crime (governed by social laws)


Lombroso and the Positive School

based on Darwin's theories; comparing criminals to non-criminals to determine factors; first to study crime scientifically; argued punishment should fit the criminal; introduced indeterminate sentences


Definition: Atavism

born criminals who are throwbacks of an earlier stage of evolution; morally inferior to the rest of the population; distinguished through certain physical/behavioral features (Stigmata)


Stigmata in criminals

large jaws, high cheekbones, insensitivity to pain, receding foreheads, small eyes; the more of these traits the more likely you were a born versus being an occaisonal criminal


4 other types of criminals defined by Lombroso

1) Epileptics
2) Criminally insane
3) Criminals of Passion
4) Criminaloids


Biological Theories of the 20th century

Goring found a correlation between criminality and intelligence; Hooton forwarded a eugenics movement; Sheldon based crime on body types; Goddard focused on intelligence as well


Stomatotype Theory

proposed by Sheldon, suggested that mesomorphic body types (muscular) were more likely to commit crime than ectomorphs (skinny) and endomorphs (fat)


Eugenics use in Canada and the world

1929-1972 eugenics was used in Alberta (case of Leilani Muir); Nazi's also used eugenics to justify genocide (Hitler ordered all criminals to be sterilized or killed)