During the 1970’s to the early 1990’s there had emerged two new approaches to the study of crime and deviance. The discipline of criminology had expanded further introducing right and left realism, both believe in different areas and came together in order to try and get a better understanding on crime and prevention. There were many theorists that had influenced the realism approaches such as; Jock Young (Left Wing) and James Wilson (Right Wing).
Outline and assess the role of the police in the social construction of crime (50 marks)
In recent years, the subject of crime has become an increasingly important theme of political, academic, and public debate. In particular, the media today is more focused on victims than it has ever been before. Through media representations of the ‘ideal victim’, this essay will subsequently show how the media are able to construct and re-affirm pre-existing traditional ideologies within the public realm. In effect, this assignment will critically assess the concept of an ‘ideal victim’ and show how the media have used this when describing crime.
This composition will look at crime and its different criminological interpretations. Crime is an umbrella word which covers a diverse range of issues and is dependant upon the theoretical stand point of the writer. Although the wordings of the explanations differ, the implications are consistent (Newburn, 2007. Doherty, 2005). Mclaughlin et al (2006) seems the most relevant for the purpose. They separate crime into three key constituent parts. These are harm, social agreement and the official societal reaction. There are different theoretical interpretations of crime. The product of culturally-bounded social interaction is crime; which is the violation of the social contract (Newburn, 2007. Young,
The official statistics are particularly useful in that they have been collected since 1857 and so provide us with an excellent historical overview of changing trends over time. They also give us a completely accurate view of the way that the criminal justice system processes offenders through arrests, trials and punishments. However, official statistics cannot be taken simply at their face value. They only show crimes which are reported to and recorded by official agencies such as the police. They account for only those crimes which are recognised as such by victims and those detected by the police. Sociologists have argued that there exists a ‘dark figure’ of unrecorded crime. This may be due to social agencies ignoring crimes committed by the ruling class such as white-collar and corporate crime and their views and stereotypes that they have against certain individuals, such as the working-class and ethnic minorities. Arguably, another reason why police recorded may be seem as inaccurate is due to the increased problem of reporting issues. There is evidence that a number of individuals choose not to report a crime on the basis that they have little faith in social agencies or that they feel that the crime may not be serious enough. Positivists favour the official statistics as they believe that they are functional for society, whereas interactionists and Marxists go against the police the statistics as they argue that they are bias. In this essay, I will discuss the
Criminology is the definition of our crime today, it defines many aspects and elements that challenge our common sense understanding of crime. The term ‘Criminology’ was first introduced into the English language in Garland 1988 by a criminologist Havelock Ellis (jones, 2013, pp. 2-3). However criminology was present in the 1860’s as Henry Maudsley a medic that worked in the prison systems to study insane and feeble - minded criminals (jones, 2013, pp. 2.) Criminology gives an understanding to those that seek justice although some victims may prevent crime or encourage it to gain the same significance. The reasoning of crime has changed considerably over the past 40 years, some say it was the change of the criminal justice system abolishing Capital punishment in 1965, or just the development in different legislations. Making punishment more psychological rather than physical punishment may have increased the velocity of the crime rate today as some may argue it is less harsh. Criminology is one to justify these changes to prevent criminal offences. Criminology is enforced to understand and analyse the extent of offences and how legislation is formed and put into practice. Development in crime in our
The importance given to certain crimes in the daily newspapers and other media sources shows us proof to the fact that crime is a topic that has the public’s interest and is a focus of their worries (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2001). It goes on to discuss the fact that crime as reported on by the media increases the public’s levels of fears and that there is little or no correlation to actual levels of violent crime in our society today.
The decision to report crimes to the police can have extensive consequences for victims and the criminal justice system. However, the task of portraying accurate crime statistics is made difficult by the differences between numbers of incidents reported to police, and numbers of people who respond positively to victim surveys. Many people respond to surveys stating that they have been victims of crime, but did not report the crimes to the police. Almost one quarter of burglaries are not reported to police. About one half of robberies, and about two-thirds of assaults are not reported. The reasons for victims not reporting crimes include, but are not limited to the following - the victim felt that the crime was trivial or unimportant, was afraid of reprisal, the victim felt that the police would not, or could not do anything or that it incident
During this essay, I will be discussing recorded crime statistics and victimisation surveys as they are our primary techniques of measuring levels and trends of crime. After briefly explaining what is meant by these terms, I will seek to evaluate their strengths and weaknesses in order to question the extent to which they are reliable resources that provide us with accurate information.
(Australian Institute of Criminology, 2009, p. 6) The media’s representation of a rapidly increasing violent crime rate is not supported by statistics which reflect that while the crime rate is rising, the rate is steady and it is believed that this number could even be fluctuated by the increase of victims reporting these types of crime to the police. According to the Australian Survey of Social Attitudes 2007, 74% of the respondents had quite a lot/a great deal of confidence in the police to solve crime. (Australian Institute of Criminology, 2007 p. 16-17) Although the statistics show the general trend of violent criminal offences is static, a significant proportion of our population still has the perception that our crime rates are increasing (Australian Institute of Criminology, 2010) due to media influence. Another way the media misrepresents Australia’s crime rate is by selectively reporting violent crimes whilst under reporting other offences, which are more prevalent in society.
The statistics for criminal offences in 2008-2009 and 2009 -2010, revealed a difference of those crimes actually reported to police and that of the crimes that were not. (ABS survey, 2012) It shows me that not everyone feels they have a responsibility to report crimes because of whatever reason they seem fit at the time of crime. It all links in to how society today thinks I guess. Some people think why bother the law is not going to protect us unless we have a status or money, their lying another issue within Australia the social inequality. It is our right and responsibility to protect each other and do right by each other, like my grandmother taught me ‘always do on to others as u would do upon yourself’ or another that I say to my children ‘treat people as u would like to be
When considering all the different types of victims out there, it is important to keep in mind the hardships they experienced to be labeled a victim. Although victims may come out the situation stronger, so victims still prefer to keep the crime to themselves. We like to think to ourselves, “Why would someone keep a crime amongst themselves?” A victim may have had a horrific past experience with law enforcement and feel they would be unsuccessful or not take the situation seriously. The victim may think the crime could be better handle personally, or that the crime is a personal matter. There is also the possibility of the victim feeling they
According the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime Report and the contrasting Department of Justice’s National Crime Victimization Survey, both reports show a steady reduction in violent crimes over the past two decades. Both reports are released annually and are comprised of statistical data of reported crime or victimization surveys of sample populations from across the country (Karmen, 2016). Though the information contained in both reports as statistically accurate as possible, a figurative spin can be placed on the information and data can be skewed to misrepresent the true picture of crime, so according to (Karmen, 2016), all statistical data but be viewed with some scientific scrutiny. Even though the data from both annual
The concept of ‘crime’ is something that depends on time, place, and other influences. For this reason, researchers have been trying to get criminologists to rethink their definitions of ‘crime’ and consider the idea of ‘social harm’ which could help better explain the causes of human suffering and the definitions of ‘crime’ and ‘criminals’ and broaden the application of criminal justice. What this rethinking can do for criminologists broadly is give them a broader picture of human psychology as well as the range of harms that individuals, communities, or whole societies experience. In this context this can include crime in the sense of activities of individuals as well as government and institutions.
White R & Haines F, Crime and Criminology: An Introduction, 2nd ed, Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 2000.