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Investigate a Social Issue - Research Paper Example

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Investigate a Social Issue Author Institution Abstract This paper aims at describing the issue of deviance. The paper will explore how the issue of deviance fits into sociology field, and the sociological theories and terminologies than explain the issue. In addition, the paper will examine what is known and what is unknown about the issue of deviance…
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Investigate a Social Issue

Deviance entails behaving in such a manner that violates the cultural norms, beliefs, and expectations that the society has on an individual. Some forms of behavior such as murder can be regarded as deviant since it is a violation of the cultural norms, which prohibit the killing of other persons. In understanding the issue of deviance, it is necessary to understand the social and cultural norms of a society. Every society has unique cultural beliefs, which guide the behavior of people in that society (Marsh, 2004). There tends to be variations in norms across cultures; as such, behavior regarded as deviant in one culture may be considered as acceptable in another culture. Therefore, deviant behavior may vary across cultures. In most instances, deviant persons may be sanctioned by their cultures if they exhibit deviant behavior that violates the set rules of society. As such, there is a need to understand ones culture and the behaviors that the culture considers as either right or wrong. An understanding of cultural norms, beliefs, and values is instrumental in keeping the society in order and avoiding conflicts, which may emanate from the lack of order in society (Marsh, 2004). How deviance fits into the field of sociology The various approaches to the issue of deviance can be biological, sociological, or psychological. The sociological perspective on the issue of deviance focuses on the role played by some factors such as social class, socialization, and culture in determining whether a person engages in deviant behavior. For example, theft, which is referred as a form of deviant behavior, can be said to be caused by sociological aspects such as poverty. There are various sociological explanations that have been raised with regard to the issue of deviance. Sociologically, deviance can be said to be relative in that the definition of deviance depends on the culture in which the issue of deviance is defined, as well as the people defining the issue (Franzese, 2009). Several sociological theories are integral to the understanding of the issue of deviance. One of the sociological theories that explain the issue of deviance is the cultural transmission theory. According to this theory, all human behavior learned and so is deviant behavior. Based on the cultural transmission theory, the learning of deviant behavior depends on the interactions with a deviant person and the age of the person learning to be deviant. The theory makes an assumption that a person has a high likelihood to become deviant if he or she associates with a deviant person at a young age (Franzese, 2009). The other sociological theory that explains the issue of deviance is the labeling theory. Based on this theory, deviance is a process whereby people consider others as deviant. Thus, a person only becomes deviant after he or she is labeled as deviant by other people. Another sociological theory that explains the issue of deviance is the anomie theory. This theory states that deviance emanates from the social strains due to the structure of the society. In this case, there are some people who engage in deviant behavior so as to overcome the strains in society. The control theory is also instrumental in explaining the ... Read More
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