Social Construction Theories On Serial Killers Essay

Length: 3 pages Sources: 3 Subject: Sociology Type: Essay Paper: #44015896
Excerpt from Essay :

Criminology researchers usually draw on multiple sociological theories for understanding crime and offenders. Certain elements of serial-killing research continue to be a subject of speculation and exploration, on account of the numerous preconceptions and myths surrounding the crime. The significance of establishing a theoretic basis to explain sociological factors proves crucial to distinguishing between fact and fiction (Hickey, 2013).

Social Structure Theory

This class of theories concentrates on the socioeconomic status of a person and suggests that the poor perpetrate more offenses owing to their struggle to achieve social or monetary success. They are, particularly owing to their subcultural, racial, or ethnic status, restricted in several ways from lawfully attaining the great “American Dream\". Thus, they resort to deviant techniques to succeed. Structural theories provide convincing justifications for numerous offenses, with the exception of serial killing. Normally, serial killers lack financial or social motivation, and aren’t members of any specific ethnic/racial minority. The urbanism idea is an example of a structural model which may better explain serial murder. Murder rates are typically the highest in the city of New York, Washington, D.C., Indiana, Miami, Detroit, Alabama, Birmingham, and other heavily-populated urban areas. Urban homicide is largely linked to social disorder, a broken family, alienation, disassociation, fear and destitution. Im-personalization and bumping into strangers frequently is what increases serial-killing likelihood in such highly-populated regions. Consider, for instance, Ted Bundy who was especially comfortable with acting in crowded shopping malls (Hickey, 2013).

Social Class Theory

Leyton’s 2011 work titled “Hunting Humans: The Rise of the Modern Multiple Murderer” delves into serial killers’ status aspirations. In his

They experience exclusion from the class they aim for and, on an extended revenge drive, kill strangers whose appearance, place of residence, or behavior are representative of the class he has been excluded from. The author claims the killing is driven by the murderers’ perceptions regarding their victims’ social status. Social class theory ideally fits serial murderers as a majority of them appear to have diverse simultaneous problems (Hickey, 2013).

Social Process Theory

This class of theories argues that criminality represents a function of socialization, which incorporates an array of socio-psychological exchanges of the criminal with social institutions and organizations. Criminals may perpetrate crime owing to peer pressure, academic failure, family issues, legal entanglements, etc., which slowly but surely drive them to commit offenses. According to process theories, any individual, irrespective of his socioeconomic or racial background, may engage in crime. A key element of both the psychoanalytic and social process theories is familial influence on violent or delinquent youngsters. The ideal example to cite here…

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