Analysis Of The Broken Windows Theory

879 Words4 Pages
Gladwell slickly introduces a uniquely reasoned theory, The Broken Windows Theory, a few pages into The Tipping Point. After explaining that this theory is about immediate environmental effects on human nature/behavior, he gives examples on how New York began improving after taking it into consideration. Specifically, this talks about the “smallest details of the immediate environment” which ultimately ends up describing the theory to be “quite a radical idea.” Gladwell mentions that it “appears to violate some of our most deeply held assumptions about human nature,” but what does he mean when referring to human nature? Could it be that it affects the way people see the environment they live in? Is it because we get used to our…show more content…
Goetz was described of having psychological issues therefore being somewhat mentally ill or at least not “right” in the mind and/or emotionally. As stated in page 156,
Psychiatrists talk about criminals as people with stunted psychological development, people who have had pathological relationships with their parents, who lack adequate role models. There is a relatively new literature that talks about genes that may or may not dispose certain individuals to crime. On the popular side, there are endless numbers of books by conservatives talking about crime as a consequence of moral failure—of communities and schools and parents who no longer raise children with a respect for right and wrong. All of those theories are essentially ways of saying that the criminal is a personality type—a personality type distinguished by an insensitivity to the norms of normal society. People with stunted psychological development don’t understand how to conduct healthy relationships. People with genetic predispositions to violence fly off the handle when normal people keep their cool. People who aren’t taught right from wrong are oblivious to what is and what is not appropriate behavior. People who grow up poor, fatherless, and buffeted by racism don’t have the same commitment to social norms as those from healthy middle-class homes. Bernie Goetz and those four thugs on the subway were, in this sense,
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