-Perfection in society is often termed Utopia. The uniformity necessary to achieve
this in human society is not possible; people are too different and distinct in their sociological experiences, in their values
and norms, and in their beliefs.
-Durkheim considers the example of a monastery. To outsiders, the monks appear to
be living within a miniscule perfect society (Utopia). However, deviance still occurs therein. It can be as seemingly innocent
(to us) as missing morning prayers, but such action is deviance from the norms they have been socialized into. [Note: Durkheim
addresses this in his essay The Normal and the Pathological]
B.) Deviance serves 4 major functions:
1. Affirming cultural values and norms
2. Clarifying moral boundaries
3. Promoting social unity
4. Encouraging social change
C.) Crime is a form
of deviance and is normal to healthy
-Crime rates fluctuate over time,
due to the complex nature of society. Whatever solution is taken at any given time is never a final solution, because crime
still exists and persists. Varying political, economic, and demographic factors interact to influence the rate of crime at
any given point in time.
-Healthy societies have relatively stable crime rates.
D.) Crime and deviance
are, in a sense, good for society, if their rates do not fall too low or climb too high.
-Very low crime rates are related to a dysfunctional society.
-Open, flexible societies with freedom have crime and deviant behavior.
-If a society's social structure is flexible, it tends to promote social change.
Deviance can also be dysfunctional.
-Rapid social change leads to disorganization and
increased levels of deviance. [Note: This has been termed by certain sociologists as anomie]
-Crime rates which are too high add dysfunction to society by:
--destroying trust and solidarity
--creating social disorganization The Rules
of Sociological Method, 1964 , Edited by George E.G. Catlin, Translated
by Sarah A. Solovay & John H. Mueller. New York: The
Free Press of Glenco