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 theories

The Rational Choice Theory of the causes of ***** behavior is essentially based on the assumption that criminals rationally make decisions that motivate and 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 ***** is that it focuses on the ***** and on his or her logical ***** rational decisions to attain certain goals. "According to Felson and Clarke (1998), the rational choice perspective ***** upon the offender's decision-making. Its main assumption is that offending is purposive *****, designed ***** benefit the offender in some way." (Rational Choice Perspective)

T*****efore t***** theory differs from other theories of crim*****al behavior such as Labeling Theory in that it focuses on ***** ***** 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 and benef*****s of the decision th***** ***** person *****s. It is also characterized by an analysis that attempts to see the ***** from the criminal's viewpoint.

Rational choice theorizing in criminology is really quite down to earth, trying ***** ***** the world from the ***** *****. ***** seeks to understand how the offender makes crime **********, driven ***** a particular motive within a specific setting, which offers the opportunities to satisfy that motive. Rational choice ***** has an image of ***** *****fender who thinks before he acts, even if only for a moment, t*****king into account some benefits and ***** in *****ting the offence. (The ***** Choice Perspective: The Home Office, 1988)

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

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

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

The theory of rational choice also acknowledges that there are various constraints and mitigating factors involved when analyzing the causes of crime in ***** of human rationality. These ***** factors that need to be considered within the broad over***** theoretical framework. RCT or Rational Choice Theory involves decision-making which can be..."constrained by


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