Rational Choice And Routine Activities Theories

1847 Words8 Pages
What is it like to think as an offender and what is it like to be a victim of crime? Rational choice and routine activities theories differ from each other because one looks at the offender side and the other looks at the victim. Rational choice theory believes that law-violating behavior is the result of cautious thought and planning of an individual by weighting the cost and the benefits before committing a crime. (Siegel 2011, p. 85). However, according to Siegel 2011, routine activities theory believes that victims put themselves in danger by engaging in high-risk activities, such as going out late at night, living in a high-crime area, and associating with high-risk peers. (p.74). Is this theory inferring that in order to avoid crime and victimization citizens must stay home? Despite of being opposite to each other, they tend to happen concurrently. According to Larry J. Siegel (2011) “Rational choice is the view that crime is a function of a decision-making process in which the potential offender weighs the potential costs and benefits of an illegal act.”(p.84) This theory has its roots in the classical criminology developed by the Italian social thinker Cesare Beccaria, whose utili- tarian methodology strongly influenced the criminal justice system and was therefore widely accepted throughout Europe and the United States. (Siegel, 2011, p.84). Rational choice theory includes three things that play a major role in the process of trying to explain crime, which will be
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