Criminology discussion post

Instructions: Each week, you have an opportunity to respond to the weekly assignment by submitting a short post. You can create your own thread or respond to another student’s post and build off their work. You do not need to do both.

Each post is worth 4 points: Posts should be (1) clearly and thoughtfully written and 300-500 words in length; (2) respond to one of the given prompts or a prompt you make up on your own!; (3) provide your own perspective and/or analysis of the week’s assignment, rather than a simple summary; (4) your original work.

Here are the prompts for Week 3 (respond to only one):

  1. Open Oregon’s Brian Fedorek cites the work of Akers and Sellers (2013). He claims that they establish a set of criteria to judge criminological theories. What are these criteria? Do you think they have merit? In your opinion, would you add or remove any criteria? Explain your arguments.
  2. In this week’s assignments, we can see how psychological and biological positivism (theories focused on individual factors) can lead to harmful assumptions about who commits crime and who does not, and result in public policy solutions that are deeply unethical (e.g., mass sterilization, eugenics, etc.). What racialized, gendered or classist (biases based on socio-economic status) assumptions do you see ingrained in these theories? Provide an example.
  3. Do you think it is important and necessary for us to account for individual characteristics when studying crime? Why or why not? (If yes, how do you think researchers (and practitioners who apply such research like police, lawmakers, judges, lawyers, etc.) should go about such work to ensure it is ethical and humane?)
  4. In class this week, we learned about theorists who saw crime as a rational or irrational. Do you see crime as a product of rational or irrational behavior (or something else)? Why? Provide concrete examples.

The only articles that can be used in this discussion post:

(5.1 5.7)