Sutherland’s Differential Association and its nine propositions

Edwin Sutherland’s theory of Differential Association evolved from the Chicago School of sociology, which observed that crime occurred more frequently in areas lacking social organization and institutions of social control (Gomme, 37). Crime was usually explained by multiple factors – such as social class, age, race, and urban or rural location. Sutherland developed his theory […]

Robert Merton’s personal adaptations to anomie (aka “strain theory”)

Like many sociologists and criminologists, Robert Merton was interested in explaining the root of social deviance; however, unlike most theorists, who posited that crime and deviance arise from individual causes (such as a biological “defect”) (Cullen & Agnew, 171), Merton argued that certain groups participate in criminal behaviour because they are“responding normally to the social […]