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Flashcards in Right Realism Deck (24)
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How do realists view crime?

As a real problem, especially for the victim, instead of a social construct.


What do right realists believe?

- Other theories have failed to solve the problem of crime.

- Interactionists and New criminologists are too sympathetic to the criminal.


What type of solutions are right realists mainly concerned with?

Practical solutions:

- best way to tackle crime is through control and punishment, rather than rehabilitation.


What are the 3 causes of crime?

1). Biological differences.

2). The underclass.

3). Rational choice theory.


Who proposes that crime is caused by biological differences?

Wilson and Herrnstein (1985).


What is the biological differences theory?

- Biological differences between people make some people innately more likely to commit crime.

- For example; aggressiveness, risk-taking, or low intelligence.


Evaluate Wilson and Herrnstein's theory?

1). Evidence is limited =

Lilly et al. found differences in intelligence accounted for only 3% of the differences in offending.


Who proposed crime is caused by inadequate socialisation?

Murray (1990).


How does Murray explain the increase in crime?

- Increase in welfare benefits have led to a rise in lone-parent families (as men no longer need to be responsible)

- Which fail to socialise their children as they are dependent on the state.


How does the underclass lead to crime?

Absent of fathers, boys lack discipline and turn to street gangs to gain status through crime rather than supporting their families.


Who proposes rational choice theory?

Wilson (1975).


How does rational choice theory explain crime?

- People weigh up whether their criminality is beneficial, and compare it with the risks of getting caught.


What are situational variables?

People choose the best time and place to commit crimes with the minimal risk of getting caught.


Evaluate Wilson's theory?

1). Its implausible for people to be rational thinkers when biology and socialisation determine their behaviour.


How do right realists propose tackling crime?

They think its pointless to try to tackle underlying causes (biology and socialisation), so focus on punishment.


What is Wilson and Kelling (1982) solution to crime?

Broken window theory =

- tackle small, minor crimes before they deteriorate, like fixing a window before the rest gets broken (zero tolerance policy).


What is an example of zero tolerance policy?

- Tackling graffiti.

- Used in New York and it decreased crime and stopped areas deteriorating.


How do right realists adopt the values of those that correspond with punishment?

Crime prevention policies should reduce rewards of crime and increase the risk of crime.


What is the crime prevention policies adopted by right realists?

1). Environmental crime prevention.

2). Situational crime prevention.


What is environmental crime prevention?

'Broken window theory' =

graffiti, begging, etc should be dealt with immediately to decline mores serious crimes from occurring.

- zero-tolerance policy.


Evaluate environmental crime prevention?

Although there was a fall in the 1990s in New York, this may be due to an increase in the number of police officers and falling unemployment, not the policy.


What is situational crime prevention?

- Target specific crimes in specific areas to reduce rewards and increase risk.

- 'Target hardening' --> increased locked doors, security guards to 'design crime out'.


Evaluate situational crime prevention?

1). Can explain rational/opportunistic crimes but not white-collar/corporate crimes.

2). Displacement =

people will move to different areas to commit their crimes, choosing different victims, times and places.


What are the criticisms of right realism?

1). Ignore wider structure causes; poverty, as they say it's irrelevant.

2). Overstates the offenders' rationality before committing utilitarian crimes, doesn't explain non-utilitarian crimes.

3). Ignores corporate/white-collar crimes which are more costly and harmful to the public.