An Introduction to Criminological Theory, 3rd Edition by Roger Hopkins Burke

By Roger Hopkins Burke

This booklet presents a entire and up to date advent to criminological thought for college students taking classes in criminology at either undergraduate and postgraduate point. The textual content is split into 5 elements, the 1st 3 of which handle excellent variety types of legal behaviour the rational actor, predestined actor, and victimized actor types. inside those a few of the criminological theories can be found chronologically within the context of 1 of those assorted traditions, and the strengths and weaknesses of every conception and version are sincerely pointed out. The fourth a part of the booklet seems to be extra heavily at newer makes an attempt to combine theoretical parts from either inside and throughout versions of felony behaviour, whereas the 5th half addresses a couple of key fresh issues of criminology – postmodernism, cultural criminology, globalization and communitarianism.

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3. There is the doctrine of free will according to which all people are free to choose their actions and this notion is often allied to the hedonistic utilitarian philosophy that all people will seek to optimise pleasure but avoid pain. From this perspective, it is assumed that there is nothing ‘different’ or ‘special’ about a criminal that differentiates them from other people. It is a doctrine thus exposed to the criticism that it fails to appreciate that the exercise of free will may be constrained by biological, psychological or social circumstances.

The focus should be less on simple breaches of the criminal law but more on regulating street life and incivilities – such as prostitution, begging, gang fights, drunkenness and disorderly conduct – which in themselves may not be that harmful, but which in aggregate are detrimental to the community and therefore need to be controlled (see Hopkins Burke, 1998b, 2004b; Karmen, 2004). Wilson is suspicious of those proponents of the predestined actor model of criminal behaviour who call for treatment not punishment.

The outcome of that fragmentation has been a new socio 17 An Introduction to Criminological Theory economic context that has been termed the postmodern condition by some social scientists (Lyotard, 1984; Baudrillard, 1988; Bauman, 1989, 1991, 1993) where there is recognition of the complexity of contemporary society and the moral ambiguities and uncertainties that are inherent within it, and where it is proposed that there are a range of different discourses that can be legitimate and hence right for different people, at different times, in different contexts.

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