Sociology Exam 4

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Sociologists definition of what is deviance?

seen from a non judgemental perspective: any act to which people react negatively

deviance is relative to society


Sociologist Howard S. Becker stated what?

"It's not the act itself, but the reactions to the act that make something deviant.


What did Sociologist Erving Goffman incorporate?

used the term stigma to refer to characteristics that discredit people


violation of norms, rules, or expectatitions



Chagnon's abrupt introduction to the Yanomami allows us to see

the relativity of deviance: what is deviant to some groups is not deviant to others


How do norms make social life possible?

make behavior predictable


"blemishes" that discredit a person's claim to a "normal" identity



group's usual and customary social arrangements, on which its members depend and on which they base their lives

social order


Why is deviance perceived to be so threatening?

deviance undermines predictability, the foundation of social life


an expression of disapproval for breaking a norm, ranging from a mild, informal reaction such as a frown to a formal reaction such as a fine or prison sentence

negative sanction


an expression of approval for following a norm, ranging from a smile or a good grade in a class to a material reward such as a prize

positive sanction


groups's formal and informal means of enforcing its norms

social control


Sociobiologists explain deviance by

looking for answers within individuals


Example of biological explanation of deviance?

men engage in more violent behavior, which comes from their lesser empathy, lower self-control, and greater tendency for taking risks


Psychologists explain deviance by

focusing on abnormalities within the individual


Is deviance associated with any particular personality?

No, there is no inevitable outcome of any childhood experience and deviance is not associated with any particular personality


Sociologists explain deviance by

apply the three sociological perspectives-symbolic interactionism, functionalism, and conflict theory


Sociologists search for factors

outside the individuals


A basic principle of symbolic interactionism is

we are thinking beings who act according to how we interpret situations


Differential association theory?

different groups with which we associate give us messages about conformity and deviance; people learn deviance from groups


Edwin Southerland's term to indicate that people who associate with some groups learn an "excess of definitions" of deviance, increasing the likelihood that they will become deviant

differential association


How do families incorporate to deviance?

typically, families that are involved in crime tend to set their children on a lawbreaking path


How do neighborhoods incorporate to deviance?

if kids grow up around delinquent friends, they are likely to become delinquent, too


What did Horowitz say about Chicano neighborhoods and deviance?

fighting, knifing, and shooting are considered "honorable"


Would symbolic interactionists think we are a prisoner of our social life?

No, we make our own decisions


the idea that two control systems-inner controls and outer controls- work against our tendencies to deviate

control theory


How did Sociologist Walter Reckless incorporate to control theory?

He developed control theory, stressed that we have two control systems that work against our motivations to deviate: our inner controls and our outer controls


include our internalized morality- conscience, religious principles, ideas of right and wrong, fears of punishment, and the desire to be a good person

inner controls


consist of people-such as family, friends, and the police-who influence us not to deviate

outer controls


What did Sociologist Travis Hirschi point out?

the stronger our bonds are with society, the more effective our inner controls are


What are these bonds based on?

attachments-our affection and respect for people who conform to mainstream norms

commitments-having a stake in society that you don't want to risk, such as your place in your family, being a college student, or having a job)

involvements-participating in approved activities

beliefs-conditions that certain actions are wrong


the view that the labels people are given effect their own and others' perceptions of them, thus channeling their behavior into either deviance or conformity

labeling theory


ways of thinking or rationalizing that help people deflect (or neutralize) society's norms; founded by Sociologists Sykes and Matza

techniques of neutralization


5 techniques of neutralization?

1. Denial of responsibility

2. Denial of injury

3. Denial of a victim

4. Condemnation of the condemners

5. Appeal to higher loyalties


What did Sociologist Mark Watson do?

participate observation with outlaw bikers


What did Watson conclude?

outlaw bikers see the world as "hostile, weak, and effeminate"; they embrace their negative labels


What did Chambliss conclude about the Saints and Roughnecks?

social class created a split vision


What did Sociologist Harold Garfinkel do?

gave the name degradation of ceremony to an extreme form of shaming


the individual is called to account before the group, witnesses denounce him or her, the offender is pronounced guilty, and the individual is stripped of his or her identity as a group member

degradation ceremony


Symbolic interactionists view on deviance?

they examine how people's definitions of the situation underlie their deviating from or conforming to social norms; they focus on group membership, how people balance pressures, and the significance of reputations


Emile Durkheim said what?

deviance is functional for society; it contributes to the social order in three ways


What are these three ways?

1. deviance clarifies moral boundaries and affirms norms

2. deviance encourages social unity

3. deviance promotes social change


Robert Merton's term for the strain engendered when a society socializes large numbers of people to desire a cultural goal (such as success), but withholds from some the approved means of reaching that goal; one adaptation to the strain is crime, the choice of an innovative means (one outside the approved system) to attain the cultural goal

strain theory



sense of nomlessness


objectives held out as legitimate or desirable for the members of a society to achieve

cultural goals


approved ways of reaching cultural goals

institutionalized means


Four deviant paths?

innovation, ritualism, retreats, rebellion


people who accept the goals of society but use illegitimate means to try to reach them



people who start out wanting the cultural goals but become discouraged and give up on achieving them, yet they still cling to conventional rules of conduct



rejection of both the cultural goals and the institutionalized means of achieving them



reject both society's goals and its institutionalized means



opportunities for crimes that are woven into the texture of life; coined by Cloward and Ohlin

illegitimate opportunity structure

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