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A Perfect World - Character Analysis

            In order to answer the question regarding the type of approach to use in determining the character of Butch Haynes portrayed by Kevin Costner, a clear understanding of the two ideologies must be ascertained. These ideologies are the classical and positivist approaches to criminology. The classical approach suggests that a person must have free will to choose criminal or conventional behavior and that people choose to commit crimes for reasons of greed or personal gain. The actual fear of the crime acts as a deterrent to the criminal. The positivist approach deals more with social scientific methods while trying to explain the criminal behavior. The criminal is considered to be a product of their social, biological, psychological, or economic backgrounds. The product of an abusive and violence related childhood could result in future acts of violence and criminality. It is from this perspective that the character of Butch Haynes will be analyzed and the source of his criminality will be explained.
             The character portrayed by Kevin Costner grew up in the later form of an environment with a terrible and mistreated childhood. His mother was a prostitute and his father was an abusive career criminal. The classical criminologist would look at his character and say that he committed the crimes with free will and without any prior circumstances of his childhood taking precedence. The idea of personal gain and the belief that the completion of the crime outweighed the chances of being caught was also a major factor in determining how a classical criminologist would analyze Butch Haynes. The positivist criminologist would examine the life of Butch Haynes and develop a profile starting from his early childhood up until he was first incarcerated. The fact that Haynes was raised in an abusive atmosphere coupled with the fact that his parents were both criminals would play a key role in determining the reasons for his criminal behavior to this point.

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