Social control.pptx (2 downloads)
Social control can be defined as everything that sets limits in social life.
Our environment controls our acts through norms and sanctions. Norms are rules and expectations others have to each other.
A distinction is made between primary and secondary control.
Primary control - Our family and friends control us.
Secondary Control - Norm breaker meets the controller. Example is the police.
Schafft writes that we have a socioeconomic status based on income and education level (Schafft, 2007, s181).
Our status is based on diffrent type of capital:
Economical - How much money you have
Cultural - Education from school
Symbolic - Recognition and prestige
The socioeconomic status divides people into different classes.
In the 1980s production was a symbol of capital, but today consumption is the main symbol.
"UNGforsks's" survey among young people showed that there was no correlation between economic capital and crime. Schafft shows that it is not necessarily better to grow up with rich parents who do not care versus poor parents who care (Schafft, 2007, s185).
Those with low socioeconomic status are overrepresented in prisons (Schafft, 2007, s183). This is due to:
Offense type - Those with high socioeconomic status commit other offenses than people with low status
Control - The offenses are controlled in a different way
Statistics - Offenses are subject to special legislation and are not registered in the crime statistics
This is supported by Paul Larsson's figure that explains that there are more prisoners with low status, than high status:
Low social class
|High social class|
We are all law-abiding because we have something to lose. We are integrated into society. We have jobs and children. The costs of beeing a criminal
is to big for the normal person.
The social control is great.
On the other hand, there are some who are frozen out of society. They have nothing to lose, so they become criminals.
Schafft writes that we have social selection mechanisms that are discriminatory (Schafft, 2007, s185).
An offense must
1) be an act,
2) there is a legal provision that defines the act as illegal and
3) There must be enforcement where it is established that the act is governed by law.
If we divide the offense we see that the act can be:
Deviation - normal
Offense - deviation
Punished strict - mild
Schafft, A. (2007). Kriminalitet, sosial bakgrunn og kontroll. I L. Finstad & C. Høigård (Red.), Kriminologi (s. 116-129). Oslo: Pax.