Theories of the Criminal Mind

Need help with my writing homework on Theories of the Criminal Mind. Write a 750 word paper answering; Hirschi states that people who have lower self control over themselves have law control over their desires and wants and they want to achieve aims and objects as soon as possible. Due to their desire to achieve aims and objectives instantly, they tend to lack the ability of making a rational choice and become impulsive. Due to this they take high risks and get involved in actions that can cause harm to themselves and others. These individuals are at a higher risk of committing criminal behavior in order to achieve their aims and objectives. For example: an individual with low self control may end to getting involved in the deviant act of stealing if he/she does not have enough money to obtain resources that they believe are favorable to them. Individuals having low self control are quite self centered and focused on their own interest and are ready to forgo the interest of others. Due to this they may not even think about the harm that may be caused to others due to their actions. Strain theory suggests that deviant activities conducted by members of a particular society are a result of the norms and values of the society. The strain theory states that members within a particular society share mutual goals but all members of the society do not have the required resources to attain to aims and objectives (Andrews, 2010, p.114). Due to this, those members of the society who do not have the required resources to attain aims and objectives end up indulging in criminal behavior to attain those aims and objectives. The theory clearly reflects upon the importance of materialistic desires that members of the society hold, but all members of the society do not have the resources such as education and finance to attain those aims and objectives, thus those who do not have the resources try to attain these objectives through deviant methods. Both strain and self control theory of criminal activity agree that the purpose or the aim of crime is to attain something desirable such as materialistic objectives of owning cars and houses. They even agree that members of society and individuals are different from each other and are unequal. The strain theory stresses upon the unequal distribution of wealth and resources among the members of society and self-control theory emphasizes on the different level of control individuals have. The main difference between the theories is that strain theory holds society and unequal distribution of resources responsible for criminal activity conducted by members of the society and on the other hand, the self-control theory holds the individual responsible for indulging in criminal behavior. According to social learning theory an individual’s gets involved into criminal behavior because he/she learns criminal behavior through those whom he is associated with. According to this theory criminal behavior is reinforced when an individual is not punished for such behavior and such behavior is reinforced, secondly the individual learns criminal behavior when such behavior is reinforced with pleasure and fulfillment of material desires and an individual learns criminal behavior when such behavior is repeatedly reinforced over non-deviant behaviors (Andrews, 2010, p.111). The basic similarity between three of these criminal activity theories is that all of them are associated with materialistic outcomes of conducting deviant behaviors.

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