Explain the five main points of Michael Gottfredson and Travis Hirschi's general theory of crime.
Michael Gottfredson and Travis Hirschi attribute the concept of self-control in regards to criminal offenders. They take into account various factors with self-control which influence a person's decision making process when committing a crime. They believe there is a separation between the person committing the crime and the crime itself.
Gottfredson and Hirschi feel that criminal offenders and their crimes contain components involving classical theory and rational choice and routine activities theories. Where some criminals may commit crimes because rewards exist and there are lies a minimal existence of pain, there are those who will commit a crime where the target is well guarded. This type of offender would be considered irrational in attempting to commit a crime where conditions such as that exist.
Another aspect pointed out is that some people are predisposed to commit crimes. Individuals may go through their daily lives attending functions such as school, church or other organizations yet if an opportunity exists, they will seek to take advantage in a situation where a home may go unguarded. .
The general theory of crime has a biosocial element to the concept of self-control. It recognizes the constant dissimilarities in one's propensity to commit crime. Reasons taken into account stem from inherited traits or from development where there lacks parenting.
When there are no proper social skills, a person's neural pathways are physically disabled. Gottfredson and Hirschi feel that the tendency to commit crimes may be accredited by a person's level of self-control. For a person who has limited self-control, they have characteristics which are insensitive to others feelings, they repudiate working towards goals and they are risk takers. Those who lack self-control are adventuresome, active, self-centered yet later in life they develop unstable relationships involving their jobs, friends and even marriage.