Essay on Deviant, Crime and Social Control

Published: 2021-08-03
601 words
3 pages
6 min to read
Boston College
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The justice system of the society is based on what is considered to be the norm. The practices that are deemed acceptable serve to shape the way of life of the community. This is what is used to determine what crime is. A deviation from the norm, doing what the members of the society consider to be right, therefore, constitutes a criminal act, and hence a person who commits the crime can, thus, be regarded as a deviant. Deviance refers to the violation of the established contextual, social norms or cultural practices whether mores, folkways or even codified law. Deviance is often divided into two broad types. There is significant deviance and minor deviance. The minor deviance is comprised of the smaller crimes or violations such as picking your nose in public while primary deviance involves committing substantial crimes such as murder. Deviance has a negative connotation in the daily language, but sociologists all over the world recognize that deviance does not necessarily bad. There are various positive contributions of deviance such as fostering social change (p. 136).

The act that I am responding to is; to establish a relatively smoothly functioning society, measures are set so that any who as deviated from the norm is adjusted back (p.138). Living in a gated community, all the residents have to change to living by the set-out bylaws of the society we have chosen to be part of. One of the ordinances states that parties at any particular household shall be held only after the management is informed and a notice printed alerting the other residents. Any individuals that are hence held without following the procedure are considered a crime in the society. This was so when one of our neighbors decided to throw an overnight party resulting in unwanted noise without the consent of the other residents. I took it to hand to report the matter to the management as one of the closest neighbors. My actions affected the deviant person since as a result of this, disciplinary action had to be made against the said neighbor to prevent future occurrences of the same, if not, we would end up in a society where each person does as she or he pleases leading to a situation of chaos.

My actions helped maintain social control since in this case, my said neighbor was banned from hosting any parties in his house for a specified period; he was also only allowed to have guests come into the estate not later than for six weeks. As a result of this particular incident being treated seriously, the bylaws of the land we took more seriously. Other sections of the said bylaws that were not being adequately adhered to were now being strictly enforced and the lawbreakers being disciplined. With time our lives had gone back to fully adhering to the bylaws we had agreed to restore order and peace in the society. The questions for further discussion are; Considering that the standards of right and wrong or what constitutes a crime in a particular community is set by what is regarded as the norm in the society, could these measures be infringing on the individual's rights and freedoms in some instances? Could they just be rules that favor the will of the ones in superior authority? And if indeed the reason of having control systems in the society is to create a favorable environment, is it not reasonable to involve every member of that particular community to spell out the norm?


An introduction to stereotypes. (n.d.). Retrieved from Lesson 6: Inequality:

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