2) Evaluate Durkheim’s View That Crime Serves the Function of Helping to Maintain Social Control.

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Durkheim argued that all social change begins with some form of deviance. In order for change to occur, yesterday’s deviance must become today’s normality. Durkheim regarded some crime as ‘an anticipation of the morality of the future’. In this way, terrorists or freedom fighters may represent a future established order. For example, Nelson Mandela, an African National Congress leader became a president of post-apartheid South Africa. He spent 27 years in prison for his stand to fight against the apartheid system. After he left prison, he worked to achieve human rights and a better future for everyone in South Africa. Due to his hard work, in the 1994 elections, all black people in South Africa were able to vote for the first time. Mandela won the election and his action was seen as bringing positive social change in his society. Therefore, Mandela’s case sustains Durkheim’s view that crime could bring social change to improve the society for the better. However, not all deviance creates positive social change. Riots and demonstrations such as the one in Libya only cause social disorder when the Libyan president, Muammar Gaddafi launched bombing attacks towards the demonstrators. Therefore, some deviance cause such as the Libyan riot has the tendency to create social disorder which causes moral panic in the society.

Cloward and Ohlin argue that crime serves the function of producing financial rewards to the criminals. They argue that criminal subcultures tend to emerge in areas where there is an established pattern of adult crime. In such areas, a ‘learning environment’ is provided for the young; they are exposed to criminal skills and deviant values and presented with criminal role models. Those who perform successfully in terms of these deviant values have the opportunities to rise in the professional criminal hierarchy. An example would be the story of Pablo Escobar, the powerful drug dealer in Columbia who owned his fame by killing a lot of people who went...