Social Control Theory Essay.

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Details:Select two sociological theories from the list: Social
Learning, Social Control (self and/or bonding), Strain (anomie and/or
general strain) or Labeling theories. Please include the following
sections in your discussion. Theories: Describe the two sociological
theories of your selection in full detail. Explain the key
concepts/propositions you intend to evaluate. Analysis: Discuss how
and in what way these theories explain and/or fail to explain the
deviant story. Compare and contrast the arguments of the two theories
in explaining the story. Use details of the story to support your
claims. Conclusion: Summarize your work. Discuss what you have done,
strengths and limitations of your analysis, what you have learned from
this exercise, and additional work needed for further study. The
theories are to be applied to John Allen Muhammad and Lee Malvo.



Here’s a snippet of the essay.


The social control theory is a theory in the field of criminology that proposes the exploitation processes of social learning and socialization and as a result building self-control and decreasing the disposition to indulge in behavior regarded as antisocial. This particular theory gained a lot of reputation in the 60s as a great number of sociologists tried to find different notions of crime. Travis Hirschi, at around this point in time, came up with a fairly innovative rendering of control theory, one founded upon the existing concepts of social control. Travis’s social control theory emphasizes that ties to school, family and other societal aspects function to shrink an individual’s propensity for what is regarded as deviant behavior. Social control theory therefore postulates that a crime or crime has the probability of occurring when such links are weakened or not established well. Proponents of control theory argue that, in the absence of such bonds crime will be an inevitable outcome (Lilly et al., 1995).


Control theories unlike other theories that seek to explain reasons that people engage in deviant behavior, take an opposite approach where they question why people refrain from offending (Akers & Sellars, 2004). The result is that criminality is now viewed as a possibility for everyone in the society and only avoided by individuals that seek to maintain social and familial bonds. These bonds are said to be based on attachment to those that are both within and also outside the family, a claim made by Hirschi. These will include co-workers, friends, teachers and commitments to certain activities that help to additionally link an individual to others and leave inadequate time to become intricate in activities considered deviant; also beliefs in a wider range of social values. Such aspects of social control are considered to work together to protect an individual from criminal involvement (Siegel & McCormick, 2006).

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