Effects Of Labelling On Deviant Behaviour

1502 Words Nov 1st, 2015 7 Pages
What is defined as deviance can be dependent on one’s subjective views which can be influence the study of crime and reliability of crime statistics. Within my essay I’ll be exploring the effects of labelling on deviant behaviour, and the ways in which views differ due to the influence of various groups within society and the influence of the media on societies interpretation of deviance.

Deviance is understood to be behaviour which deviates from what is seen as the norm or what is socially acceptable by violating the rules of groups in society, and on that basis an individual’s behaviour can be labelled as deviant. Within many societies particular rules are enforced leading to expectations of those within that society and subsequently those who do not abide to these rules are perceived as deviant.

Acts of deviance can be seen to be either primary or secondary deviance. ‘The terms primary and secondary deviance capture the distinction between original and effective causes of deviance’ (Lemert 1951,1967). Lemert (1951,1967) argued that several acts of norm violations that occur occasionally e.g. underage boy who occasionally drinks at a party often causes very little reaction from others therefore the individuals perception of themselves will also not be effected, this is considered as primary deviance. However secondary deviance occurs when others take notice and respond to one’s deviant behaviour. Consequently, this can lead individuals to associate themselves with…
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