It has been observed that Adam Lanza suffered from autism, a neurodevelopment disorder that hampered his ‘social interactions and communication abilities’ (Winters, Globokar, and Roberson 2014: 80). The adverse effects of single parenting because of his father’s divorce with the mother may have aggravated his social seclusion. His mother herself is described as a gun enthusiast who taught him the basic lessons in shooting (Bates, Boyle, and Peterson 2012). She occasionally took him to shooting ranges and the four guns that Adams used for the serial shooting belonged to her. The lack of social support and the inner mental strains of Adams Lanza are evidenced by his long disturbing creative assignments dealing with battles, destruction and war (Sanchez 2013). This paper seeks to undertake a social psychological analysis on the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting with special reference to the sociological frameworks of symbolic interactionist perspective and social structure and personality perspective. The paper also employs theories on agents of socialization as well social structure, attitudes and behavior (attitudes and agents of socialization) for the purpose of analysis.
Symbolic interactionist perspective emphasizes the interactions of the individual within the society. The perspective holds that individuals derive meanings of their social lives from their interactions with other people and these meanings guide their behavior patterns. Symbolic interactionism helps one to grasp the social processes that influence one’s understanding of the world while it holds that each individual tends to construct meanings about things that are significant in one’s life (Rohall, Milkie, and Lucas 2013: 28). Symbolic interactionism also emphasizes the subjective reality that every individual experiences in the society. Kendall (2014: 28), in this respect, observes that each individual develops his/her own