Chapter 11 Flashcards--Strain perspective

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Anomie

A condition affecting a society or group in which a high degree of confusion and/or contradiction between norms exists due to inadequate regulation and integration.

Boundary or Setting

The erection and maintenance of rules, in terms of their priority in society, that allows citizens to be constantly aware of the limits society has placed on their behavior.

Conflict Subcultures

Primarily involved in expressive crimes of violence. They occur most often in the most deteriorated neighborhoods, which lack residents who could be considered "successful" role models.

Conformists

Those individuals who accept both the goals and means of society

Criminal Subcultures

Primarily involved in instrumental crimes. They are associated with communities in which the "successful" residents are involved in (organized) criminal activities.

Latent Functions

The unintended and often unrecognized results of a pattern of social activity.

Innovators

Those individuals who accept the goals of society, but reject or significantly alter the acceptable means of achieving these goals.

Malicious

Describes delinquent or criminal behavior that is committed for enjoyment or pleasure gained by discomforting others.

Modes of adaptation

Five methods that Merton predicts individuals will use to deal with strain: conformity, ritualism, innovation, retreatism, and rebellion. Each is defined by the manner in which the individual reacts to culturally prescribed goals and the means of achieving them.

Negativistic

Describes delinquent or criminal behavior that is directed against the norms that exist in the larger culture.

Nonutilitarian

Describes delinquent or criminal behavior that is committed for no rational purpose;e.g. stealing for the fun of it or for status.

Opportunity structure

Set of methods perceived by an individual to be both available and useful in obtaining desired goals. It is heavily influenced by role models upon which individuals pattern their behavior.

Rebels

Those individuals who not only reject the goals and means of society, but also replace them with new goals and means with which they feel assured of success.

Reaction Formation

Phenomenon of wanting something but rejecting it because you cannot obtain it.

Retreatists

Those individuals who reject both the goals and the means of the dominant society.

Retreatist subcultures

Primarily involved in expressive crimes involving drug and alcohol use.

Ritualists

Those individuals who reject the socially approved goals of society but retain the means of achieving them.

Status frustration

A condition in which an individual is unable to achieve a desired social status or other reward because of that society's normative structure.

Strain

The tension produced by the discrepancy between universally desired goals and differentially distributed means of attaining them in a society. It is a specific form, or subtype, of anomie.

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