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Durkheim’s Theory Of Suicide And Deviance| Online Assignment Help

Assignment 4 Sociology 320WR

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1. Getting Ready: Familiarize yourself with Durkheim’s ontological assumptions, epistemology, and goals, and his theory of suicide, paying attention to the following concepts: integration, regulation, collective consciousness/conscience collective, social solidarity, moral cohesion, and ritual. Make sure you understand how these concepts come together to create a theoretical framework that helps us to understand acts of deviant behavior beyond suicide. Specifically, in this assignment you will be asked to expand Durkheim’s theory of suicide and use it to explain why some people engage in deviant or illegal behavior and why others are less likely to do so.

2. Collecting the Data: Think of two people you know, one of whom has never been in trouble with the law and who almost always lives up to social norms and expectations (i.e., is considered non-deviant). The other person should be one who has engaged in illegal or deviant activities (e.g., underage drinking, illegal drug use, breaking curfew, very young sexual activity), whether or not s/he has been in official trouble with the law.

Thinking about the concepts that Durkheim provides to help us understand suicide (as a form of deviant behavior), create a short interview guide that will guide conversations with the above two people.

Remember that integration can include membership in any type or organization, club, or family involvement. Here are some examples: Did the individual enjoy school and feel a part of the social life at school? Was s/he involved in sports, clubs, church groups, or other extra-curricular activities? Did s/he have a job after school?

Regulation includes the ritual involvement in these groups. At home, did the family get together for regular activities (e.g., evening meals, family meetings or vacations, weekend activities, church attendance)? If involved in extra-curricular activities, how often did clubs meet? What did coaches expect of him or her? E.g., An individual might belong to a club that meets only rarely or s/he might belong to a team that practices daily where attendance and hard workouts are required. Or you will likely find that both people you interviewed belonged to families (integration) but that one family does little more than share living space (low regulation) while the other expects all members to eat meals together, go boating (or another activity) together, go to religious services together (higher regulation).

So, rather than asking, “Were you integrated into society as a child?” you might ask, “What clubs or after school organizations did you belong to? Tell me about those–what you did, how involved or included you felt,” etc. Rather than asking about levels of regulation in the groups that your respondents belonged to, ask them what routines or rituals the groups regularly went through, how often they met, what they did when they got together, etc. Ask also about how “close” they felt to these groups (as a measure of solidarity and moral cohesion) and ask what the group’s beliefs were and how strongly the individual believed in the legitimacy of those beliefs (as a

measure of collective consciousness). For example, Boy/Girl Scouts profess a belief system that might differ from the beliefs of a gang.

Don’t be afraid to wander from your interview guide, and try not to talk in sociological jargon. Remember that feelings of “closeness” of or “belonging” can be substituted for “solidarity” or “moral cohesion” and that “What beliefs or values did you learn from the group” can be substituted for “What was the group’s conscience collective?”

The point is to determine individual levels of integration, regulation, solidarity or moral cohesion with the group, and the extent to which the individual had internalized or felt allegiance to the collective consciousness of the groups to which s/he belonged. Remember that Durkheim tells us that ritual builds solidarity and moral cohesion and that those are the forces that regulate us by binding us to the collective consciousness of the group.

Keep notes of the answers you get and/or, with the individual’s permission, tape record the conversations so you can refer back to them later. Be sure NOT to record the individual’s real name on your notes, in your tape recordings, or in your paper. In your paper, you should provide a pseudonym (false name).

3. Writing the Paper:

A. Setting the Theoretical Framework: With accuracy, completeness, precision, clarity, depth, and breadth (see the Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking), explain Durkheim’s ontology, espitsmology, and goals, as well as his theory of suicide, including the concepts integration, regulation, collective consciousness/conscience collective, social solidarity, moral cohesion, and ritual delineated in “Getting Ready,” (above). (80 points)

B. Presenting the Data: Provide a “thick” description that tells me about the lives of the two people you have chosen to interview. A thick description provides a level of detail that allows the reader a sense of having been present at the interview and a good idea of what the person’s life is (or was) like. (20 points)

C. Analyzing the Data: With accuracy, completeness, precision, clarity, depth, and breadth and an appropriate amount of elaboration on your explanations, use the theories and concepts to explain why one of your research subjects has engaged in deviant behavior and why the other has not (or at least has never been caught). You need to associate specific examples of integration, regulation, solidarity, moral cohesion, ritual, and collective consciousness for each subject. If these individuals’ lives cannot be explained using the concepts and theories, draw on other theories (perhaps Marx or Weber have something to add here) or create new concepts to explain what you believe accounts for their differences in life experiences.

The point here is to use concepts and theory to understand the life experiences of your “sample.” If you believe Durkheim’s theory and concepts are inadequate for your analysis, you may draw in theories you have learned in other classes, ideally weaving in additional concepts with those offered by Durkheim. If you reject the theories entirely, you must provide a full explanation why

none of the concepts fit before you offer an alternative theoretical analysis. (80 points)

D. Using logic –that is, drawing conclusions based on your data: What conclusions can you draw from your data and your analysis about the effects that the conceptual variables have on social behavior? What variables, concepts, or theories might add to the theories? (10 points)

E. Implications: If your analysis and conclusions are correct, what are the implications for efforts to reduce juvenile delinquency, suicide, and other forms of deviant or criminal behavior? Thinking more in terms of social policy, what recommendations would you offer to the governor or the mayor of your city to reduce rates of juvenile delinquency? Be sure to discuss the implications fully (10 points).

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  • Assignment 4

    Soc 320

    A to A- (100-88) B+ to B- (87-80) C+ to C- (79-70) D+ to F (69-0)

    Part 1-Explanation of

    theory and concepts

    80 points

    Clearly, accurately,

    completely, and

    precisely explains

    Durkheim’s ontology,

    epistemology, and

    goals, his theory of

    suicide, including all

    concepts called for in

    the assignment

    guidelines. Provides

    original examples (not

    given in class) and not

    tied to the assignment

    to add clarity, depth,

    breadth and

    elaboration.

    80….72

    Clearly, accurately,

    completely, and

    precisely explains

    Durkheim’s ontology,

    epistemology, and

    goals, his theory of

    suicide, including all

    concepts called for in

    the assignment

    guidelines. Provides

    examples to add

    clarity, depth, and

    breadth and

    elaboration.

    71…64

    Clearly and accurately

    explains Durkheim’s

    ontology, epistemology, and

    goals, his theory of suicide,

    including all concepts called

    for in the assignment

    guidelines. Provides some

    examples to add clarity.

    Explanation is accurate and

    complete but lacks depth,

    breadth, clarity, and/or

    precision.

    63…56

    Unclear,

    inaccurate,

    and/or

    incomplete

    explanation of

    the theories and

    concepts.

    Accurate and

    precise

    examples are

    lacking.

    55… 0

    Part 2–Presentation

    of Data

    20 points

    Provides a very “thick

    description” of the

    people whose lives you

    will analyze, including

    information about

    integration, regulation,

    ritual involvement,

    moral cohesion, social

    solidarity, and belief in

    the collective

    consciousness of the

    groups to which they

    belonged.

    20…18

    Provides a fairly “thick

    description” of the

    people whose lives

    you will analyze,

    including information

    about integration,

    regulation, ritual

    involvement, moral

    cohesion, social

    solidarity, and belief

    in the collective

    consciousness of the

    groups to which they

    belonged.

    17…16

    Provides a less than “thick

    description”of the people

    whose lives you will analyze,

    including information about

    integration, regulation,

    ritual involvement, moral

    cohesion, social solidarity,

    and belief in the collective

    consciousness of the groups

    to which they belonged.

    15…14

    Provides a weak

    description of

    the people

    whose lives you

    will analyze,

    including

    incomplete

    information

    about

    integration,

    regulation, ritual

    involvement,

    moral cohesion,

    social solidarity,

    and belief in the

    collective

    consciousness of

    the groups to

    which they

    belonged.

    13…0

    Part 3–Analysis of

    Data

    80 points

    Clearly, accurately,

    completely, and with

    depth and precision

    uses the theories and

    concepts to explain

    how the individuals

    Clearly, accurately,

    and completely with

    some depth uses the

    theories and concepts

    to explain how the

    individuals whose

    Clearly, accurately, and

    completely uses the theories

    and concepts to explain how

    the individuals whose lives

    you analyze became

    involved in or avoided

    Less than

    accurately &

    completely,

    lacking clarity,

    depth, and/or

    precision, uses

    whose lives you

    analyze became

    involved in or avoided

    becoming involved in

    deviant activities.

    Connects each of the

    concepts with two or

    more examples from

    the data. Provides an

    accurate, complete,

    and logical explanation

    for why each person

    engaged in or avoided

    deviant behavior.

    80…72

    lives you analyze

    became involved in or

    avoided becoming

    involved in deviant

    activities. Connects

    each of the concepts

    with two or more

    examples from the

    data. Provides an

    accurate, complete,

    and logical

    explanation for why

    each person engaged

    in or avoided deviant

    behavior.

    71…64

    becoming involved in

    deviant activities. Connects

    each of the concepts with

    two or more examples from

    the data. Provides an

    accurate, complete, and

    logical explanation for why

    each person engaged in or

    avoided deviant behavior.

    63…56

    the theories &

    concepts to

    explain how the

    individuals

    whose lives you

    analyze became

    involved in or

    avoided

    becoming

    involved in

    deviant

    activities.

    Connects each

    of the concepts

    with two or

    more examples

    from the data.

    Provides an

    accurate,

    complete, and

    logical

    explanation for

    why each

    person engaged

    in or avoided

    deviant

    behavior.

    55 … 0

    Part 4–Conclusions

    10 points

    Policy Implications

    (see below)

    10 points

    Draws theoretical

    conclusions that follow

    logically from your

    data and analysis (or

    additional adequate and

    relevant data are

    provided to explain the

    deviant and non-

    deviant activity of each

    person. The argument

    is logical and clear and

    is well-supported by

    data.

    10 9

    Draws theoretical

    conclusions that

    follow logically from

    your data and analysis

    (or additional

    adequate and

    relevant data are

    provided to explain

    the deviant and non-

    deviant activity of

    each person. The

    argument is logically

    weak or only fairly

    supported by data.

    8.5 8

    Draws theoretical

    conclusions that follow

    somewhat logically from

    your data and analysis (or

    additional adequate and

    relevant data are provided

    to explain the deviant and

    non-deviant activity of each

    person. The argument uses

    weak logic and is fairly

    supported by data.

    7.5 7

    Draws

    theoretical

    conclusions that

    do not follow

    logically from

    your data and

    analysis (or

    additional

    adequate and

    relevant data

    are provided to

    explain the

    deviant and

    non-deviant

    activity of each

    person. The

    argument is

    illogical or is not

    supported by

    data.

    6.5 . . .0

    Clearly and logically

    identifies policy

    implications based on

    the data and analysis.

    Suggests social

    programs that are

    logically based on

    theory and analysis of

    data.

    10 9

    Logically identifies

    policy implications

    based on the data and

    analysis. Suggests

    social programs that

    are logically based on

    theory and analysis of

    data.

    8.5 8

    Clearly and logically

    identifies policy implications

    based on the data and

    analysis OR suggests social

    programs that are logically

    based on theory and analysis

    of data.

    7.5 7

    Policy

    implications and

    suggested

    programs are not

    clearly presented

    and/or logically

    connected to the

    theory and data

    analysis.

    6.5 6 5 4 … 0

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  • EMILE DURKHEIM
    (1858-1917)

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    (1858-1917)

    I. Biography

    Born April 15, 1958 in Epinal, France

    Jewish, came from a long line of rabbis

    Studies Talmud; rejects religion as outmoded but recognizes the role is plays in creating solidarity in society and in regulating people

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    Biography, Cont’d

    Eventually becomes agnostic and decides on a secular career

    Later studies religion from an agnostic perspective

    Maintains ties to his family and religious community, despite agnosticism

    1879– Enters Ecole Normale Superieur in Paris (a very prestigious college)

    Becomes interested in a scientific approach to studying society

    –Goes against the philosophical approach of the college and the times

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    Biography, Cont’d

    1882–graduates Ecole Normale Superieur

    Because his ideas differ from the dominant ways of thinking about society in France at the time, he can’t find a job

    1885–Moves to Germany to further his studies in the scientific method and how to use it to study society

    1887–Returns to Bordeaux, France and is appointed Head of Courses on Teaching and the Social Sciences, effectively becoming Chair of the first Sociology Department in France.

    Advocates the use of scientific method to study and develop better teaching methods

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    Biography, Cont’d

    1887–Marries Louise Dreyfus, later has one son, Andre and one daughter, Marie.

    1893–Publishes The Division of Labor in Society

    1895–Publishes The Rules of Sociological Method

    1897–Publishes Suicide: A Study in Sociology

    1899–Establishes France’s first sociological journal, L’Annee Sociologique

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    Biography, Cont’d

    1902–Appointed Charge du Cours (Head of Courses) at the Sorbonne

    1906–Made a Full Professor, appointed Chair of the department Science of Education and Sociology at the Sorbonne

    1912–Published The Elementary Forms of Religious Life

    1916–Son Andre is killed on the Belgian front in WWI

    1917–Suffered a stroke and several months later died

    EMILE DURKHEIM

    II. Major Contributions to Sociology

    Considered by many to be the founder of sociology

    Established a positivist scientific method in sociology

    Established sociology as an academic discipline

    His work continues to be followed by scholars interested in deviance, crime, family, education, and religion

    Seeks to understand what holds society together and how.

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    III. Biographical and Historical Influences

    A. Religious influences:

    Jewish, lived in Alsace-Lorraine region of France;

    early in his life Jews were tolerated;

    later, in 1870s, France entered the Franco-Prussian War, when Napoleon III invaded Prussia & lost,

    Jews were scapegoated & persecuted

    –Durkheim becomes interested in in-group solidarity and the conditions under which it becomes stronger

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    III. Biographical and Historical Influences, cont’d

    B. Political–the political unrest in France during his lifetime led Durkheim to question the moral foundations of society;

    Durkheim asks: What holds society together, giving it a feeling of unity?

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    III. Biographical and Historical Influences, cont’d

    C. Rapid Industrialization & Urbanization–breakdown of close social order of pre-industrial era;

    urbanization displaced the moral unity and order of the small town communities of Durkheim’s childhood

    Durkheim concludes old moral order needs to be replaced by a new moral order;

    –he distrusts self-interest (against Adam Smith) & believes that morality is based on a concern for the common good.

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IV. Intellectual Roots

    A. Enlightenment Philosophers–

    Adopts ideas of individual freedoms, democracy, scientific rationality, and secularism.

    Does not favor returning to a simpler time, as Rousseau did, but opposes rapid, revolutionary change, as Marx, Voltaire, and others did.

    Today he is often considered conservative because he seeks to understand social problems, how to predict and control them

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IV. Intellectual Roots

    1. Immanuel Kant–what is moral?

    Kant believed that moral decisions should not be based on “enlightened self-interest”

    Instead “morality” meant first fulfilling one’s social obligations and only then pursuing one’s personal interests.

    –Society before the individual

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IV. Intellectual Roots

    2. Utilitarians (e.g., Thomas Hobbes, Jeremy Bentham, John Stuart Mill, Adam Smith)– Society = the sum of individuals

    Morality = the promotion of the greater happiness or good for the greater number of individuals (Bentham)

    –Adam Smith promotes the idea of enlightened self-interest

    –when people pursue their own self-interests, the result will be the greater good for the greater number, and this is good for society

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IV. Intellectual Roots

    Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) – Utilitarian, cousin of Charles Darwin

    Adopts the idea that individuals competing in society result in the “survival of the fittest”

    Overlooks the structural and cultural constraints that keep some locked in poverty

    *Assumes wealthiest are “fittest,” even though most of the wealthiest did nothing to achieve their wealth

    *Ignores the hard work that most poor people do

    Note: Such beliefs are a foundation for fiscal conservatism in the United States.

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IV. Intellectual Roots

    -Durkheim is anti-utilitarian:

    • Believes society exists sui generis –in a category by itself; is greater than the sum of individuals with an independent existence

    b. Believes in individual rights as long as they do not conflict with societal needs

    c. Agrees with Kant’s idea that the rights of individuals are connected with their membership in society

    –thus individual rights are connected with responsibility to the group

    [Note: This idea is a foundation today for social conservatism and liberalism in the U.S.]

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IV. Intellectual Roots

    3. Thomas Hobbes–society is based on a “social contract”–an agreement among individuals to limit some freedoms to gain others

    (E.g., Agree to limit their freedom to take whatever they want to gain the freedom from fear of robbery, burglary, or assault.)

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IV. Intellectual Roots

    –Durkheim says social solidarity must precede the social contract, since there are 2 elements of the contract

    a. That we agree to enter a contract; and

    b. That we first agree to abide by our agreement–that trust or solidarity must first exist

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IV. Intellectual Roots

    Solidarity as the basis of the social contract is created through social rituals and is reflected through totems–symbols of what is sacred to us

    –Solidarity– a sense of belonging to a group/society

    –Solidarity is a foundation of our collective beliefs

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IV. Intellectual Roots

    B. Psychology–developed the idea of individual consciousness & used scientific method to study it;

    –From this Durkheim develops the idea of the common or collective consciousness— the collective beliefs of a society, greater than the sum of individual consciousnesses, and needs to be studied as a separate phenomenon

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    V. Theoretical Framework: Positivism

    • Ontology–Realism–The assumption that social order is an independent entity
    • Society exists sui generis —is a category in its own right

    Durkheim is interested in “social facts”—aspects of social life that are common throughout society and that influence behavior

    e.g., law, demographic shifts, economy, division of labor

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    V. Theoretical Framework: Positivism

    2. Epistemology –Durkheim says study “social facts”–events, trends, and social forces that exist outside of individuals

    Developed structural positivism, examining through empirical evidence the impact of institutions and forces outside the individual on group behavior

    And the comparative method– the researcher looks at the conditions under which a phenomenon occurs and then compares it with the conditions under which it rarely occurs; then draws inferences or conclusions about causality

    3. Level of abstraction that is desirable–nomothetic–grand scale theories with high levels of abstraction

    4. Goals–To predict and control social problems

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    Durkheim is credited for creating sociology as an academic discipline and for recognizing that the methods used in the natural and physical sciences could be used to study society.

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VI. Major Ideas:

    • Defined society is a distinct form of reality–society forms a reality in and of itself, not reducible to its component parts or to its individual members.
    • Society exists sui generis —in a category by itself

    C. Society has an a priori existence– it exists independently of those living in the society or independently of the social institutions in a society

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    Three key points:

    • Sociology is a distinct field of study that focuses on society and social facts to explain human behavior;
    • The methods of the natural sciences can be used to study society;
    • Sociology is distinct from psychology;

    Sociology focuses on social facts —forces outside individuals and groups; psychology focuses on individual psyches and the brain

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    Sociology focuses on social facts —forces outside individuals and group psyches and the brain

    social facts— identifiable by the following traits:

    1.General or common throughout society, existing outside of individuals;

    2. Capable of exercising control over behavior;

    3. Usually pre-exist and outlive members of society

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    Some examples of social facts:

    *Collective consciousness/beliefs—norms, folkways, mores;

    *Language, which shapes how we understand the world

    *Law—which codifies some of our collective beliefs

    *Customs and traditions

    *Religion

    *Demographic trends

    *Technology, which may open or close opportunities to us

    *Levels and types of social solidarity

    *Collective currents– the “great movements of enthusiasm, indignation, and pity in a crowd” that do not start with any one individual

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    We are often completely unaware of how social facts control us until we try to defy their control.

    “In the case of purely moral maxims; the public conscience exercises a check on every act which offends it by means of the surveillance it exercises over the conduct of citizens, and the appropriate penalties at its disposal. In many cases the constraint is less violent, but nevertheless it always exists. If I do not submit to the conventions of society, if in my dress I do not conform to the customs observed in my country and in my class, the ridicule I provoke, the social isolation in which I am kept, although in an attenuated form, the same effects as a punishment in the strict sense of the word.” (p. 102)

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    Durkheim sums it up this way,

    “Here, then, is a category of facts with very distinctive characteristics: it consists of ways of acting, thinking, and feeling, external to the individual, and endowed with a power of coercion, by reason of which they control him.” (p. 102)

    Where does the control come from? “…since their source is not in the individual, their substratum can be no other than society.” (p. 102)

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    Durkheim concludes that sociologists should study these “facts” that exist outside of individuals.

    We should work to discover the external forces that shape and control our lives.

    We should work to show correlations between two or more types of social fact.

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    The Normal and the Pathological (A subsection of The Rules)

    Crime (and deviance) is inevitable in all societies because it marks the moral boundaries in a society and communicates to members of society what behaviors are acceptable and which are unacceptable

    Crime asserts the collective beliefs on which its definition is based

    Even in an idyllic perfect society, some behaviors will be defined as deviant

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    Crime and deviance are important facilitators of social change

    As crimes and deviance become evident, the collective consciousness (shared beliefs) of a society can change

    e.g., child abuse, spouse abuse, civil rights for people of color; same-sex sexual activity, expressions of gender

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VII. The Rules of Sociological Method

    “Crime is, then, necessary; it is bound up with the fundamental conditions of social life, and by that very fact it is useful, because these conditions of which it is a part are themselves indispensable to the normal evolution of morality and law.” (p. 107)

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VIII. The Division of Labor in Society

    Deviance includes everything from violations of norms (both folkways and mores) to acts committed that violate laws (crime and taboos)

    The stronger the level of solidarity and the stronger the collective consciousness, the more acts will be considered deviant, with punishments swifter and harsher than in societies with lower levels of solidarity and weaker C.C.

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM

    “If the collective conscience is stronger, if it has enough authority practically to suppress these divergences, it will also be more sensitive, more exacting; and, reacting against the slightest deviations with the energy it otherwise displays only against more considerable infractions, it will attribute to them the same gravity as formerly to crimes. In other words, it will designate them as criminal.” (p. 107) (From The Rules…)

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VIII. The Division of Labor in Society

    Durkheim believes that societies’ level of solidarity progress from stronger to weaker.

    To examine this he looks at the division of labor as a social fact and then correlates that with a level of solidarity and that to crime and punishment

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VIII. The Division of Labor in Society

    The Division of Labor in Society

    1. In pre-modern, horticultural and agrarian societies, there was a low division of labor—people all did essentially the same jobs, with divisions based primarily in gender and age

    2. Societies with a low division of labor tend to have what Durkheim conceptualized as mechanical solidarity—a feeling that everyone was the same

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VIII. The Division of Labor in Society

    The feeling of likeness or sameness resulted in a unified collective consciousness and very strong solidarity.

    3. In modern societies there is a high division of labor— people carry out numerous jobs and roles and are very different from one another

    4. Societies with a high division of labor tend to have a more diverse collective consciousness and organic solidarity— where each person is interdependent though the feeling of solidarity and belonging is weaker

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VIII. The Division of Labor in Society

    5. Societies with mechanical solidarity are very exacting about crime and deviance.

    Everyone is to respect the group, and those who deviate or offend the group are punished quickly and severely

    Durkheim called the system of justice “repressive law”—crimes are considered to be against the group, and punishments are swift and severe

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VIII. The Division of Labor in Society

    6. Societies with a high division of labor and organic solidarity still have criminal codes, but deviance is more tolerated, and crimes are considered to be against individuals, not the entire society.

    Restitutive law —designed to restore justice to the victim of crime is practiced

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    La Suicide— Durkheim’s study, Suicide

    People think of suicide as an intensely personal act.

    Durkheim wanted to study how social facts affected rates of suicide between societies, historical periods, and groups of people within a society

    He demonstrates that individual pathologies (e.g., depression) are often rooted in social conditions

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    La Suicide— Durkheim’s study, Suicide

    Suicide rates are highest in places or eras where people lack or have too much integration and moral regulation.

    Durkheim argues that there is a balance between the individual and society that must be kept

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Variations occur in correlation with two variables:

    Level of integration—membership of individuals in social groups; identification with social groups

    Level of regulation—the ways in which individuals are bound to the group through rituals and routine expectations

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Egoism occurs when individuals are not well-integrated into society

    e.g., are not married, don’t have children, aren’t employed, don’t belong to groups

    The individual self has too much freedom and becomes self-destructive

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Anomie—a sense of normlessness—occurs when individuals are not regulated by society

    People may be integrated (e.g., belong to a church; have a job) but lack the regulation that comes with routine and ritual demands

    e.g., I may belong to a church but only go on high holidays; I may have a job but work from home and have few demands on me

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Durkheim argues that both egoism and anomie are chronic in modern societies

    We are not well-integrated; we put individual needs before societal needs; we don’t join in

    We lack the moral regulation that comes from rituals that are common in some religions; we lack

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Egoistic suicide rates are higher among people who lack integration into society—people feel isolated and morally adrift

    When people are poorly integrated, they do not have society to sustain them

    Suicide rates are higher among single, divorced, and widowed people than among married people

    Higher among unemployed than employed people

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Anomic suicide rates are higher among people who lack regulation

    Regulation comes from rituals, routines, and other constraints

    *Jews—highest rituals, lowest suicide rates

    *Catholics—mid-level of ritual, middle suicide rates

    *Protestants—lowest rituals, highest suicide rates of the three groups

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    You might think about what hypothesis you would offer regarding the suicide rates of Muslims or Atheists if all other factors (e.g., marriage, employment, etc.) were controlled

    What hypothesis would you offer regarding people who have been married and divorced several times?

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Durkheim is also interested in what happens when people are overly-integrated into a society

    –When they identify with the society and place its needs before its own

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Altruism is an unselfish regard for or devotion to others

    e.g., jumping into a rushing river to save a drowning person

    Altruistic suicide rates are higher in small societies where there is mechanical solidarity

    e.g., among Native Americans or First Nation people (e.g., Inuit) who are known to commit suicide when they are no longer useful; suicide bombers

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Fatalism is an acceptance of the inevitable, a belief in fate

    Fatalistic suicide rates are higher in groups where regulation of individuals is oppressive

    Durkheim mentioned this only in a footnote

    e.g., Rates of suicide among slaves, oppressed people (e.g., suicide attempts by prisoners at Guantanamo Bay)

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    He wants to know why suicide rates are lower in small rural communities and higher in large urban centers.

    Small societies tend to have mechanical solidarity with adequate integration into the social order and adequate moral regulation

    Large urban societies have organic solidarity and lack adequate integration and moral regulation

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    High Regulation——————Low Regulation

    Fatalistic Suicide Anomic Suicide

    High Integration—————–Low Integration

    Altruistic Suicide Egoistic Suicide

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    VI. Major Ideas:

    In times of financial crisis, it is not poverty, per se, that results in higher rates of suicide, but the anomie—lack of norms to guide and regulate behavior—that occurs

    Durkheim argues that poverty and limited means are buffers against suicide because they regulate our aspirations.

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    He wants to know why suicide rates are lower in small rural communities and higher in large urban centers. Why modern societies have higher suicide rates than traditional societies

    Small societies tend to have mechanical solidarity with adequate integration into the social order and adequate moral regulation

    Large urban societies have organic solidarity and lack adequate integration and moral regulation

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    IX. La Suicide

    Durkheim has been criticized for over-simplifying modern and traditional societies

    There is also co-linearity (overlap) between regulation and integration

    *

    Travis Hirschi: Social Control Theory

    Sidebar:

    In Durkheim’s theory of suicide, we can see how being involved in groups and following routines buffers us against suicide.

    Durkheim thought that participating in religious rituals created solidarity and made people want to go along with the conscience collective of their society.

    *

    Travis Hirschi: Social Control Theory

    Sidebar:

    Travis Hirschi (1935- ) developed “social control theory” by building on some of Durkheim’s ideas

    In 1969, Hirschi theorized that there are four social factors that insulate people from becoming involved in criminal behavior.

    (See https:// lumen.instructure.com/courses/199939/pages/Section7-17 )

    *

    Travis Hirschi: Social Control Theory

    Sidebar:

    Those four factors are as follows:

    • Attachment—our connections to others. When we are attached to people who follow the rules of society, we worry about what they will think of us.
    • Commitment—the investments we make in the community. If we’re known in the community by the work (or volunteer work we do), we have more to lose than someone who doesn’t.

    *

    Travis Hirschi: Social Control Theory

    Sidebar:

    3. Involvement—participating in groups and organizations. Kids who belong to clubs or play sports are less likely to commit crimes than those who don’t.

    4. Belief—if we believe in the legitimacy of the rules and laws we’re more likely to follow them, even when no one is looking

    *

    Travis Hirschi: Social Control Theory

    I see strong connections between Durkheim’s theory of suicide and its focus on integration, regulation, rituals, and the conscience collective and Hirschi’s theory.

    The connections between rituals, solidarity, and the collective consciousness and Hirschi’s theory will become clearer.

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    X. The Elementary Forms of Religious Life

    Durkheim sees religious (and secular) ceremonies as ways of worshipping social life and what people in a society hold to be sacred (i.e., beyond the everyday world)

    Religion goes beyond the worship of supernatural deities; it worships society itself

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    X. The Elementary Forms of Religious Life

    He divides religion into rituals and beliefs

    Rituals are highly routinized acts that provide a common focus that unites people despite their differences

    e.g., Communion, Friday Prayers, Marking the Sabbath, Pledge of Allegiance, National Anthem

    Rituals build solidarity—they are common experiences that bind us together

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    X. The Elementary Forms of Religious Life

    Symbols are objects that stand for or represent something else

    Symbols show membership in a group

    e.g., Cross, Crucifix, Star of David, Crescent moon and star

    “Without symbols, social sentiments could have only precarious existence.” (123)—They solidify the conscience collective.

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    X. The Elementary Forms of Religious Life

    Through ritual interaction, aspects of the group become sacred –those aspects of the group that are extraordinary and “above and beyond” the everyday life world

    Durkheim refers to the everyday aspects of life as profane—the mundane aspects of day to day life

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    X. The Elementary Forms of Religious Life

    Religion emerges as groups feel the collective current of interaction and feel it as something exterior to themselves.

    Collective current —a surge of emotion that runs through a crowd

    The collective current then turn the sacred aspects of the community into symbols that represent the group and their membership in it

    Put simply: God is in the gathering and is nothing more than the sacred essence of society

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    XI. Other Major Ideas:

    Durkheim theorized that getting children and adults integrated into schools and later work, into religious organizations, and other groups, in addition to belonging to their families, would provide the integration and regulation needed to prevent them from engaging in deviant and criminal acts.

    *

    EMILE DURKHEIM
    XI. Other Major Ideas:

    In these groups, children would learn the conscience collective of their culture.

    Through ritual interaction, they would build the solidarity and moral cohesion with the group that would make them want to follow the rules.

    Only when that fails, Durkheim argued, should a society need to turn to punishme

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