Essay - Comparing/contrasting Theories of Criminal Behavior Rational Choice Theory Compared to...

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Comparing/contrasting theories of criminal behavior

Rational Choice Theory compared to Labeling and Radical *****

The Rational Choice ***** of the causes of criminal behavior is essentially based on ***** assumpti***** that criminals rationally make decisions that motivate ***** lead them to commit criminal acts. ***** theory emphasizes individual choice and the personal decision-making process in an attempt to understand the causes of crime. The strength of this theory is ***** it focuses on the ***** and on his or her logical and rational decisions ***** attain certain goals. "According to Felson ***** Clarke (1998), the rational choice perspective focuses upon the ********** decision-making. Its main assumption is that offending is purposive *****, designed ***** benefit the offender in some way." (Rational Choice Perspective)

***** th***** *****ory differs from other theories of crim*****al behavior such as Labeling Theory in ***** it focuses on personal and individual concerns rather than outside factors. In effect the theory involves viewing the causes of crime in terms of an *****alysis that looks at the costs ***** benefits of the decision ***** the person makes. It is also characterized by an analysis th***** attempts to see the ***** from the criminal's viewpoint.

Rational choice *****orizing in crim*****ology is really quite down to earth, trying to ***** the world from the offender's *****. It seeks to understand how the offender makes crime *****s, driven ***** a particular motive within a specific setting, which offers ***** opportunities to sat*****fy that motive. Rational choice theory has an image of the offender who thinks before he *****, even if only for a moment, taking into account some benefits and costs in committing t***** offence. (The Rational Choice Perspective: The Home Office, 1988)

The theory of ***** choice is based on the work of early classical theorists such as Jeremy Bentham and their views of human behavior which emphasized the following aspects:

*****) The human being is a rational actor, (2) Rationality involves an end/means calculation, (3) People (freely) choose all *****, both conforming and deviant, based on their ***** calculations, (4) The central element of calculation involves a cost benefit *****nalys*****: Pleasure versus Pain, (5) Choice, with all other conditions equal, will be directed towards the maximization of individual pleasure, (6) Choice can be controlled through ***** perception and *****ing of the potential pain or punishment that ***** follow an act judged to be in violation of ***** social good, the social contract. (Keel, R. *****004)

This theoretical st*****dpoint is based on other assumptions about ***** behavior. These include the *****: humans are essenti*****y goal ***** and act with purpose; *****y have hierarchical needs and preferences and make choices according to this hierarchy of needs. (Turner Jonathan, 1991)

The ***** ***** rational choice also acknowledges that there are various constraints and mitigating f*****ors involved when analyzing the ***** of crime in terms of human *****ity. These are factors that need to be considered within the broad overall ***** frame*****. RCT or Rational ***** Theory involves decision-making which can be..."constrained by


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