I aim to look at crime and deviance from a Marxist perspective & a Right Realist perspective. I will provide a definition of crime and deviance. Throughout my assignment I aim to cover just how extensive crime & deviance is in contemporary Britain, also to consider who are the offenders and more so, why do people commit crimes? I will also be exploring how crime is measured alongside my own opinions on the subject.
Crime is usually defined simply as a violation of the criminal law. Deviance is a much wider and vaguer concept than crime and is therefore more difficult to define. Deviance exists in relation to what is considered `normal` in a society. Crime & deviance are overlapping in categories because criminal acts are often viewed as deviant acts. (Wincup E 1999).
Social problems are prominently political problems. They are identified and shaped in an ongoing political process. What is regarded as a problem by one group may not be perceived in this way by another group in society.
There are many different types of deviance, there is criminal and non-criminal. There are power crimes for example: environmental pollution, health & safety in the workplace and unethical business practices which can adversely affect vast members of the public. The sanctions are usually small fines. There are also Consensus crimes for example rape, murder, robbery etc. Then there is conflict crimes which occurs when social class & various interests groups may well be in conflict with each other. Vagrancy or creating a public disturbance. Drug offences for example drug & alcohol offences, political crimes for example espionage, conspiracy & terrorism. Minor offences regarding property for example vandalism & petty theft and the right to life offences e.g. euthanasia & abortion.
Sociologists use various ways to analyse the way in which crime is measured. They are victim surveys, which can be National and local surveys, self report studies and official statistics.