Robert Merton Anomie THeory

2189 WordsJan 15, 20149 Pages
Meyer R. Scholnick also known as Robert King Merton was born on the 4th of July 2010 in Philadelphia in a Jewish family from Russia that immigrated to the United States of America. He took advantage of the culture riches surrounding him by frequenting nearby cultural and educational venues when he was in High School. Merton's numerous childhood encounters composed a basis for his theory of social structure. The field of criminology and criminal justice has employed many of Merton’s prominent concepts such as anomie, strain, manifest and latent functions, self-fulfilling prophecy, deviant, and the theory of reference groups. His theories are usually concentrated on the understanding of deviant cultures. This essay would seek to evaluate…show more content…
The first adaptation put forth by Merton is Innovation that describes a group of people within a society acknowledging the cultural goals their society sets out however, rejects the cultural legitimate means of attaining those goals. When the person feels that the importance of success outweighs the means of achieving it, strain is experienced resulting in “Innovation”. When innovators decide to achieve the culturally approved goals through illegitimate means, deviance occurs. Ritualism is an adaptation that involves individuals to over concentrate on the means of achieving “the end”(material wealth). Ritualism as suggested by Merton is common among the middle class who have little chance to acquire those socially constructed goals, yet is scared of risking what they have already owned if the resort to innovation. By giving up their goal of success, the individual is considered deviant. Retreatism is an adaptation that Merton describes as individuals due to their own conscience or internal pressure rejects both the ultimate goal and the ways to attain those goals. Merton categorizes psychotics, vagrants, psychoneurotic, pariahs and addicts as retreatists whereby they are often described to be in a society but are not part of it and the crimes they commit would likely be for the reason of self-preservation. Rebellions oppose conformity and it is the least common adaptation in society. Similar to retreatism, rebellions rejects

More about Robert Merton Anomie THeory

Open Document