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Explaining Deviance: The Act
TRUE/FALSE


  1. Social theories of crime largely replaced biological theories of crime by the mid-20th century.


Answer: True


  1. In the social sciences multiple theories exist simultaneously.


Answer: True


  1. Deviance specialists who lean toward the more “objective” side of the objective-subjective continuum find interpretive theories to be the most useful in their analyses.


Answer: False


  1. Positivist theorists attempt to understand deviant acts by looking to cause and

effect relationships.
Answer: True


  1. According to Emile Durkheim, a certain level of deviance is functional for society.


Answer: True


  1. In Robert Merton’s anomie and strain theories, “deinstitutionalization of the means” refers to cases where society’s emphasis on the legitimate means is greater than its emphasis on the institutionalized goals.


Answer: False


  1. According to Agnew’s general strain theory, strain must be accompanied by negative emotions in order for deviance to emerge.


Answer: True


  1. According to empirical tests of Agnew’s general strain theory, women who are very successful at goal achievement are more likely to engage in purging, because of their intense perfectionism.


Answer: False


  1. Cohen’s theory of status frustration is categorized as both a subcultural theory and a functionalist theory.


Answer: True


  1. One of the weaknesses of Merton’s strain theory, differential association theory, and Cohen’s theory of status frustration is that they all traditionally identify deviance and criminality as lower-class phenomena.


Answer: False


  1. According to Parnaby and Sacco’s (2004) research on celebrity and strain, culture jamming is an example of Merton’s “rebellion” mode of adaptation.


Answer: True


  1. Lauritsen (1994) found that strain increases sexual activity among African-American females, but not among African-American males.


Answer: True


  1. According to Ostrowksy and Messner’s (2005) research on strain, depression, and gender, depression is associated with criminal offending in young adult females, but not young adult males.


Answer: False


  1. According to Sutherland’s differential association theory, deviant behaviour is learned through the same process through which conforming behaviour is learned.


Answer: True


  1. According to social learning theory, all behaviour is due, in part, to differential association.


Answer: True


  1. In exploring how techniques of neutralization may vary across contexts, Buzzell (2005) found that fireworks consumers who lived where fireworks were illegal were more likely to agree with the statement that fireworks “don’t really hurt anyone” than were consumers who lived where fireworks were legal.


Answer: True



  1. Social learning theory has been criticized for conflating pre-act techniques of neutralization with post-act techniques of justification.


Answer: False


  1. The general theory of crime is also known as self-control theory.


Answer: True

  1. Social control theorists claim that deviant behaviour is inherently unattractive, so strong motives for deviance must be learned before deviant behaviour will occur.


Answer: False Page: 66


  1. The concept of self-control is central to the explanation of deviance found in Hirschi’s social bonds theory.


Answer: False Page: 66


  1. According to the general theory of crime, low levels of self-control are relatively stable throughout life.


Answer: True Page: 67


  1. Jones and Quisenberry (2004) found that low levels of self-control are associated with antisocial deviant behaviours (e.g. risky driving) in some people, but with adventure-seeking behaviours (e.g. skydiving) in others.


Answer: True Page: 68


  1. According to the general theory of crime, deviance is the result of learning within small groups.


Answer: False Page: 67-68

MULTIPLE-CHOICE


  1. Which of the following types of theories are utilized in the study of deviance?

    1. general sociological theories

    2. criminological theories

    3. interdisciplinary theories

    4. feminist theories

    5. sociological theories, criminological theories, interdisciplinary theories, and feminist theories are all used in the study of deviance


Answer: e Page: 37


  1. Which category of theory is most concerned with why people act in deviant ways?

a. positivist

b. interpretive

c. critical

d. Marxist

e. postmodern
Answer: a Page: 38-39


  1. Which of the following is a characteristic of positivist theories?

a. emancipatory interest

b. technical interest in the mastery of the environment

c. value-orienting foundation

d. foundation in symbolic dialogue

e. interest in events that may be unique and unrepeatable

Answer: b Page: 39-40


  1. Which theories are the most concerned with the maintenance of the social order?

a. social control theories

b. learning theories

c. functionalist theories

d. postmodern theories

e. power-reflexive theories
Answer: c Page: 40-41


  1. What is the functionalist perspective of society’s rules?

a. rules are made to be broken

b. society’s rules reproduce patriarchy

c. society’s rules are determined by powerful groups in society

d. there is general consensus about what society’s rules should be

e. there is conflict over what society’s rules should be
Answer: d Page: 41


  1. Which of the following theories includes the claim that traditional gender roles,

wherein women perform expressive tasks and men perform instrumental tasks,

ensure that the family division of labour is done efficiently?

a. functionalist theories

b. learning theories

c. social control theories

d. power-reflexive theories

e. feminist theories
Answer: a Page: 41


  1. According to functionalist theorists, after people “let off steam” through minor

acts of deviance, various processes motivate them to return to their acceptable

roles in society. Which process would include sending someone to jail?

a. socialization

b. profit

c persuasion

d. coercion



e. internalization
Answer: d Page: 42


  1. Which function of deviance is served by collectively manufacturing an evil enemy image directed at “terrorists”?

    1. helping society determine its moral boundaries

    2. reducing societal tensions by “letting off steam”

    3. increasing social solidarity

    4. testing society’s boundaries

    5. preventing harm


Answer: c Page: 43


  1. In some communities in Russia today, there is a growing problem of substance abuse, due to

    1. enhanced social cohesion under capitalism.

    2. greater moral regulation under capitalism.

    3. more freedom of travel across borders under capitalism.

    4. anomic disorder creating a greater demand for substances.

    5. the need to reduce societal tensions by “letting off steam.”


Answer: d Page: 45


  1. According to Durkheim’s functionalist theory, in what type of society is deviance the most likely to exceed functional levels?

  1. society characterized by mechanical solidarity

  2. society characterized by rapid social change

  3. society where a small group of people have most of the social power

  4. society where social bonds become too tight

  5. society characterized by multiple dimensions of inequality


Answer: b Page: 44


  1. According to Merton’s strain theory, what causes deviance?

  1. a gap between institutionalized goals and illegitimate means of achieving those goals

  2. structure of society

  3. availability of illegitimate opportunities

  4. breakdown of social bonds due to rapid social change

  5. the need to reduce societal tensions by “letting off steam.”


Answer: b Page: 46


  1. Despite his best efforts, Chris has been unemployed for more than two years. He has finally decided that there is no point in pursuing the “American Dream” anymore. He stops looking for a job, and sits at home drinking beer all day long. Which mode of adaptation is he engaging in?

  1. conformity

  2. rebellion

  3. ritualism

  4. retreatism

  5. innovation


Answer: d Page: 48-49


  1. How does Cloward and Ohlin’s differential opportunity theory compare to Merton’s strain theory?

  1. strain theory proposes that there are structural differences in access to legitimate opportunities, but differential opportunity theory disagrees

  2. strain theory proposes that there are structural differences in access to legitimate opportunities, and differential opportunity theory agrees

  3. strain theory proposes that there are structural differences in access to illegitimate opportunities, but differential opportunity theory disagrees

  4. strain theory proposes that there are structural differences in access to illegitimate opportunities, and differential opportunity theory agrees

  5. differential opportunity theory proposes that there are structural differences in access to legitimate opportunities, but strain theory disagrees


Answer: b Page: 50


  1. Cherise lives in a neighbourhood where there is an organized group of people involved in selling illegal weapons to rival gangs. Seeing an opportunity to make some money, Cherise joins this group of weapons dealers. According to Cloward and Ohlin’s differential opportunity theory, what type of group has Cherise joined?

  1. “conflict gang”

  2. “retreatist gang”

  3. “criminal gang”

  4. “criminal collectivity”

  5. “conflict collectivity”


Answer: c Page: 50


  1. Which of the following theories best explains why university students who place a high value on academic work, but have GPAs below 3.0 and score high on measures of depression, are most likely to use “homework drugs”?

  1. differential opportunity theory

  2. Agnew’s general strain theory

  3. self-control theory

  4. social learning theory

  5. Merton’s strain theory


Answer: b Page: 51-52


  1. Which of the following statements about microanomie is true?

  1. microanomie refers to a state wherein self-enhancement values are exceeded by self-trancendence values

  2. due to gender differences in socialization, females experience more microanomie than do males

  3. self-enhancement values include equality and social justice

  4. microanomie refers to a state wherein self-transcendence values are exceeded by self-enhancement values

  5. strain results in deviance only when accompanied by negative emotions, such as anger or depression


Answer: d Page: 56


  1. When does status frustration emerge?

  1. when lower-class boys are unable to live up to the middle-class measuring rod in schools

  2. when upper-class boys are unable to live up to the high expectations their parents have of them

  3. when there is a gap between institutionalized goals and the legitimate means of achieving those goals

  4. when lower-class boys who get high grades in school become outcasts among their lower-class peers

  5. when members of the upper-class feel they must turn to corporate crime in order to achieve the goals of the corporation


Answer: a Page: 53


  1. What criticisms have been directed at functionalist theories?

  1. they are teleological

  2. they are tautological

  3. they have a conservative bias

  4. they have an androcentric bias

  5. functionalist theories have been criticized for being teleological, tautological, conservative, and androcentric


Answer: e Page: 54-55


  1. In 2006, a young woman who was suffering from severe depression placed a daily online diary on YouTube. It was later discovered that she was not suffering from depression, but in fact was an actress who was using YouTube as a venue for auditioning. According to Parnaby and Sacco’s (2004) research on celebrity and strain, this would be an example of

    1. conformity.

    2. innovation.

    3. retreatism.

    4. ritualism.

    5. rebellion.


Answer: b Page: 57


  1. Which of the following theories have been criticized for identifying deviance and criminality as lower-class phenomena?

  1. Merton’s strain theory

  2. differential association theory

  3. social bonds theory

  4. social learning theory

  5. self-control theory


Answer: a Page: 55


  1. Which theory does not identify deviance and criminality as lower-class

phenomena?

  1. Merton’s theory of strain

  2. differential opportunity theory

  3. Cohen’s theory of status frustration

  4. Agnew’s general strain theory

  5. Merton’s theory of anomie


Answer: d Page: 55


  1. According to Lauritsen (1994), for which of the following groups of adolescents does strain increase the frequency of unprotected sexual activity?

    1. African-American females

    2. African-American males

    3. Caucasian females

    4. Caucasian males

    5. African-American females and males


Answer: a Page: 56


  1. Which of the following statements is a component of Sutherland’s differential association theory?

  1. television, music, and movies have a substantial impact on the learning of deviance

  2. large groups have more of an influence on the learning of deviance than small groups do

  3. the more important a particular group is to the individual, the greater the influence that group will have on the learning of deviance

  4. the skills needed for deviance are learned within groups, but the motives for deviance are derived from personality factors

  5. shorter periods of interaction have more of an influence on the learning of deviance than long periods of interaction do


Answer: c Page: 58-59


  1. Sutherland’s differential association theory proposes that groups we interact with early in life have more of an influence on the learning of deviance than groups we interact with later in life do. This is known as

  1. duration.

  2. priority.

  3. intensity.

  4. frequency.

  5. primacy.


Answer: b Page: 59


  1. In an interview, one female exotic dancer states the following when asked about her career: “You should see the cops when they come in. They watch us dance for an hour or two before they bust anybody…there’s usually a half dozen of ‘em at a time. How many cops does it take to write a ticket for lewd dancing…?” Which technique of neutralization is she using?

    1. condemning the condemners

    2. denial of the victim

    3. denial of injury

    4. denial of responsibility

    5. appealing to higher loyalties


Answer: a Page: 61


  1. In response to the accusation that child beauty pageants attract pedophiles, the pageant contestants’ mothers typically say that only someone who is “sick” themselves would even suggest that people would find these little girls “sexy”. Which technique of neutralization are these mothers using?

  1. denial of injury

  2. denial of responsibility

  3. condemnation of the condemners

  4. denial of the victim

  5. appealing to higher loyalties


Answer: c Page: 62


  1. Some individuals who download music illegally defend their actions by saying that the music industry makes more than enough profit from the pockets of consumers. Which technique of neutralization are these individuals using?

a. denial of injury

b. denial of responsibility

c. condemnation of the condemners

d. denial of the victim

e. appealing to higher loyalties
Answer: d Page: 61



  1. Which of the following scenarios reflects social learning theory?

a. Alexei begins taking anabolic steroids when he notices the muscular, popular boys at school taking them

b. Kristin has always had a bad relationship with her parents, and begins taking drugs

c. a male cross-dresser rationalizes his behaviour by saying to himself, “I’m not hurting anyone”

d. a group of low-income boys who are failing their classes start hanging out together, and begin vandalizing property

e. Erika decides that if she is ever going to achieve the “American Dream”, she is going to have to break a few rules at work
Answer: a Page: 63


  1. Which two theories did Piquero, Tibbits, and Blankenship integrate to explain why some MBA students said they would continue to distribute a suspected dangerous pharmaceutical, while other MBA students said they would recall that pharmaceutical?

    1. neutralization theory and social learning theory

    2. differential association theory and the general theory of crime

    3. Merton’s strain theory and social learning theory

    4. neutralization theory and differential association theory

    5. Merton’s strain theory and differential association theory


Answer: d Page: 59, 65


  1. During an interview for the school paper, the local high school valedictorian is asked how he managed to stay out of trouble during his teenage years. He replies, “Are you kidding? I was so busy studying, playing basketball on the school team, participating in the debating club, and volunteering with the Boys’and Girls’ Club, I didn’t have any time to get into trouble!” Which one of Hirschi’s social bonds in reflected in his statement?

a. belief

b. involvement

c. commitment

d. attachment



e. self-control
Answer: b Page: 66


  1. Which of the following theories is a social control theory?

    1. differential opportunity theory

    2. differential association theory

    3. general theory of crime

    4. general strain theory

    5. neutralization theory


Answer: c Page: 67


  1. According to social bonds theory, some people abstain from deviance because they would have too much to lose in their lives if they became deviant. This refers to the social bond of

  1. belief.

  2. involvement.

  3. commitment.

  4. attachment.

  5. self-control.


Answer: c Page: 66


  1. Which of the following statements reflects Gottfredson and Hirschi’s general theory of crime?

  1. level of self-control varies significantly during a person’s lifetime

  2. low levels of self-control are the result of participation in deviant peer subcultures

  3. people with low levels of self-control are more likely to adhere to authority, and therefore follow society’s rules

  4. low levels of self-control are primarily the result of ineffective parenting

  5. low levels of self-control are associated with violent crime, but high levels of self-control are associated with white-collar crime


Answer: d Page: 67


  1. Empirical research using the self-control theory has found that low levels of self-control are associated with

  1. purging.

  2. risky sexual behaviour.

  3. a greater likelihood of being a victim of crime.

  4. spreading rumours about others.

  5. low levels of self-control are associated with purging, risky sexual behaviour, a greater likelihood of being a victim of crime, and spreading rumours about others.


Answer: e Page: 67


  1. Which theory of deviance emphasizes self-control?

  1. social learning theory

  2. pluralist conflict theory

  3. general theory of crime

  4. social bonds theory

  5. labelling theory


Answer: c Page: 67
SHORT ANSWER


  1. Identify what positivist, interpretive, and critical theories each focus their analytical attention on.


Page: 38-39


  1. List the five techniques of neutralization addressed in neutralization theory, and describe the techniques that are used by individuals who download music illegally.


Page: 60-61 /A


  1. Explain the use of “homework drugs” among university students, according to Agnew’s general strain theory.





  1. Explain how Emile Durkheim would likely answer the question, “Why do people engage in deviance?”





  1. According to social learning theory, what are the four sources of all behaviour and how can this lead to deviance?





  1. Differentiate between the behavioural and the psychological measurements of self-control.



  1. Differential association theory maintains that the group interactions to which one

is exposed have an impact on the learning of deviance. Explain the various types

of group interactions, according to this theory.


ESSAY


  1. Explain what Merton means when he says that the structure of society creates deviance. Describe the five modes of adaptation included in Merton's strain theory, and give an example of each, based upon the pursuit of fame and celebrity.



  1. Identify the different types of research interests of deviance specialists that lean toward the more objective end of the objective-subjective continuum and those that lean toward the more subjective end of the continuum. Explain why each of these groups of deviance specialists tends to utilize different types of theories, identify those theories, and describe how those types of theories are related to the differential interests of each of these deviance specialists.




  1. Consider the example of marijuana use. Compare and contrast the types of explanations of this behaviour that might emerge from social learning theory and neutralization theory.





  1. Select the ONE positivist theory that you think best explains underage drinking. Use that theory to explain underage drinking, and clarify the reason why you think this is the best theory in this particular instance.




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