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is the condition that exists when social regulations (norms) in a society break down


one form of deviance, specifically behavior that violates criminal laws


the study of crime from a scientific perspective


behavior that is recognized as violating expected rules and norms

Labeling theory

a theory that interprets the responses o other as most significant in understanding deviant behavior

Structural strain theory

a theory that interprets deviance as originating in the tensions that exist in society between cultural goals and the means people have to achieve those goals

Differential association theory

theory that interprets deviance as behavior one learns through interaction with others

Caste system

a system of stratification (characterized by low social mobility) in which one's place in the stratification system is determined by birth


the monetary value of everything one actually owns


the amount of money brought into a household from various sources during a year

Educational attainment

the total years of formal education

Estate system

a system of stratification in which the ownership of property and the exercise of power is monopolized by and elite or noble class that has total control over social resources


a belief system that tries to explain and justify the status quo


a system in which one's status is based on merit or accomplishments

Net financial assets

cash and bank accounts plus securities and investment accounts that can be readily converted into cash. Excluded are illiquid physical assets such as real estate, automobiles, art, jewelry, furniture, collectibles, etc., which are included in calculations of Net Worth.

Social class

the social structure hierarchical position groups hold relative to the economic, social, political and cultural resources of society

Social mobility

a person's movement over time from one class to another

Social stratification

a relatively fixed hierarchical arrangement in society by which groups have different access to resources, power and perceived social worth; a system of structured social inequality

Socioeconomic status (SES)

a measure of class standing, typically indicated by income, occupational prestige and educational attainment

Affirmative action

a method for opening opportunities to women and minorities that specifically redressed past discrimination by taking positive measures to recruit and hire previously disadvantaged groups.

Color-blind racism

ignoring legitimate racial, ethnic and cultural differences between groups, thus denying the reality of such differences


overt negative and unequal treatment of the members of some social group or stratum solely because of their membership in that group or stratum

Ethnic group

a social category of people who share a common culture, such as a common language or dialect, religion of norms, practices and customs

Institutional racism

racism involving notions of racial or ethnic inferiority that have become ingrained into society's institutions


the negative evaluation of a social group and individuals within that group, based upon conceptions about that social group that are held despite facts that contradict it


a social category, or social construction that we treat as distinct on the basis of certain characteristics, some biological, that have been assigned social importance in the society


the perception and treatment of a racial or ethnic group, or member of a group as intellectually, socially, and culturally inferior to one's own group

Residential segregation

the spatial separation of racial and ethnic groups in different residential areas


the spatial and social separation of racial and ethnic groups


an oversimplified set of beliefs about the members of a social group or social stratum that is used to categorize individuals of that group


socially learned expectations and behaviors associated with members of each sex

Gender identity

one's definition of self as a woman or man

Gender socialization

the process by which men and women learn the expectations associated with their sex

Occupational segregation

a pattern in which different groups of workers are separated into different occupations


a society or group where men have power over women

Achievement test

a test intended to measure what is actually learned rather than potential


socialization that involves formal and institutional aspects of education

Cognitive ability

capabilities related to the use of knowledge to make decisions and solve problems

Self- fulfilling prophecy

the process by which merely applying label changes behavior and thus tends to justify the label

Standardized ability test

tests given to large populations and scored with respect to population averages

Stereotype threat effect

the effect of a negative stereotype about one's self upon one's own test performance

Teacher expectancy test

the effect of the teacher's expectations on the student's actual performance, independent of the student's ability


grouping or stratifying, students in school on the basis of ability test scores

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