Theories Explaining Juvenile Crime Essay examples

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Theories Explaining Juvenile Crime

Many theories, at both the macro and micro level, have been proposed to explain juvenile crime. Some prominent theories include Social Disorganization theory, Differential Social Organization theory, Social Control theory, and Differential Association theory. When determining which theories are more valid, the question must be explored whether people deviate because of what they learn or from how they are controlled? Mercer L. Sullivan’s book, “Getting Paid” Youth Crime and Work in the Inner City clearly suggests that the learning theories both at the macro level, Differential social organization, and micro level, Differential association theory, are the more accurate of the two types of theory.
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La Barriada fell in the middle on both categories. This information supports the theory.
Ethnicity of the neighborhoods, however, one of the primary reasons for delinquency according to this theory, is not consistent in this study. Projectville, the highest in crime, is the one with the least ethnic heterogeneity, according to Table 6, with 91% black, 3% white and 6% other. La Barriada, with the middle crime rate, was the one with the most heterogeneity: 34% white, 4% black and 62% other. The second theory, Differential Social Organization, was created by Edwin Sutherland. This theory proposes that a group or societal crime rate is determined by the extent to which it is organized in favor of crime versus organized against crime. According to the theory, an organized neighborhood is one that has a strong infrastructure in place to fight and deter crime. Groups that the theory takes into account as being detrimental to crime are the police, schools, families, and other neighborhood groups designed to keep kids out of trouble. Groups considered favorable to crime include the mafia, gangs and other groups that commit crime or encourage other people to commit crime for them.

This theory is supported very clearly by the three neighborhoods in the study.