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13513 Chapter06 Ppt Essay

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Chapter 6
Critical Theories: Marxist, Conflict &

Chapter Summary
 Chapter Six is an overview of the critical
theories of crime. The Chapter begins with
an evaluation and analysis of Karl Marx.
 From neo-Marxism came the more popular
conflict theory of crime. The Chapter then
discusses post modernism and peacemaking
criminology, and explains why these theories
are recognized in the critical framework.
 After reading this chapter, students should
be able to:
 Explain critical criminology.
 Chapter Six then explains feminism, & the
gendered problem of crime.

Chapter Summary

The chapter concludes with an analysis and
evaluation of each of the critical theories,
as well as the policy implications that arise
from the critical theories.
Understand Marxism and neo-Marxism
Explain the conflict perspective of crime
Understand postmodernist & peacemaking
Discuss feminist criminology.
Analyze and critique the critical theories.
Discuss policy implications.

The Conflict Perspective of
 Critical theorists see society riddled with
dissension, inequality, and conflict.
 Any apparent consensus in society is
maintained by overt and covert coercion.
 Critical criminology: An umbrella term
chosen for variety of theories united only the
above assumption that conflict and power
relations between various classes of people
best characterize the nature of society.

Karl Marx & Revolution
 The core of Marxist is the concept of class struggle.
 In Marx’s time the oppressors were the wealth
owners of the means of production (the
bourgeoisie) and the oppressed were the working
class (the proletariat).
 The ruling class always develops ideologies to
justify and legitimize their exploitation.
 Marx called the workers’ acceptance of ideologies
that ran counter to their interests false

Karl Marx & Revolution
 In time, false consciousness would be
replaced by class consciousness; that is, the
recognition of a common class condition and
the development of a common unity in
opposition to capitalist exploitation.
 This would set the stage for revolution.

Karl Marx &
 According to Marx and Engels, criminals came
from a third class in society—the
lumpenproletariat—who would play no decisive
role in the expected revolution.
 Crime was the product of an unjust, alienating,
and demoralizing social condition that denied
productive labor to the masses of unemployed.

Karl Marx & Revolution

The origin of crime has come to be
known as the primitive rebellion.
Capitalist societies pass laws that
criminalize any action that jeopardizes
private property and tend to overlook
many socially injurious activities
viewed as economically beneficial for
the ruling class.

Willem Bonger: The 1st Marxist
 Willem Bonger: Criminality and
Economic Conditions (1969) supported
the view that the roots of crime lay in
the exploitative and alienating
conditions of capitalism.
 The social sentiments that concerned
him were altruism—an active concern
for the well-being of others—and its
opposite, egoism, a concern only for
one’s own selfish interests.

Willem Bonger: The 1st Marxist

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