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Evaluate the changing demographics of society and their impact on the criminal justice system.

Instructions:

 You answer the three following short essay questions below with peer review references in well-constructed paragraphs that make sense. It must be your own work.

1 - Daly and Chesney-Lind considered five (5) insights to be distinctive features of feminist theory?  List and describe these features, using at least 500 words not including the references.  How do feminist theories relate to the criminal justice system? Keep in mind what other social demographic factors may come into play.

2 - Laub and Sampson identify five (5) aspects to the process of desistance during adulthood. Identify and briefly explain these five aspects, using at least 500 words, not including the references in the word count.  Aside from the demographic of age, are there any other demographic characteristics, which may affect desistance?

3 - Based upon the various biosocial risk and protective factors you have studied thus far, define "risk factor" and "protective factor."  Then identify and explain 3 risk factors and 3 protective factors. Again, specify any demographics (age, gender, race, education, etc.) which may influence risk and/or protective factors.  Your answer must be at least 500 words in lengthnot including the references

Compose your work in a .doc or .docx file type using a word processor (such as Microsoft Word, etc.). Check your work and correct any spelling or grammatical errors.

 

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Feminist Theory

The distinctive features of feminist theory that have been considered by Daly and Chesney include the following.

1. Gender is not just a natural but also a social, cultural and historical product. It is associated with the biological sex differences as well as reproductive capacities.

2. Gender along with gender relations demand for social institutions and social life in fundamental ways.

3. Gender relations and the constructs of masculinity and femininity are not fundamentally symmetrical, however, are based on an organising principle of superiority of men and the political-economic and social dominance of men over women.

4. The systems of knowledge reflect the views of social and natural world of men, and the production of knowledge is thus gendered.

5. Women should be placed at the centre of the intellectual inquiry and not positioned at the peripheral or invisible or as appendages to men (Lilly, Cullen and Ball, 2018).

Based on these features of the feminist theory, it can be stated that the position of women in the society is highly influenced by the perspectives that have been preestablished with the men being the focus or at hierarchically high position. As a result of the same, the criminal and justice system have also evolved in such manner that it treats the women and their criminal offenses as a part of them being the female sex (Mason, and Stubbs, 2010). The fundamental elements that are associated with the feminist perspectives within criminology include the following.

• Recognition of the significance of power for shaping the social relations
• Sensitivity towards the influence of the social context on behaviour
• Openness and creativity associated with thinking about evaluating and producing knowledge
• Political commitment towards social change
• Recognition of the social reality being a process focus on the gender or sex being the central organising principle in the social life (Daly, 2010)

Renzetti(2016) has mentioned that there exists certain uncertainty regarding the exact perspective of feminist criminology. However, it can also be stated that feminism is not merely a theoretical framework and is also a social movement. Feminist criminologists strive towards developing evidence-based knowledge, which would empower the individuals and groups to act towards changing the condition and behaviour that are oppressive or harmful. Willison and O'Brien (2017) have mentioned that the decontextualization of women's crime is a procedure in which the institutional and social contexts that are relevant to the criminalisation of the behaviours of women are minimised. Therefore, it can be stated that the feminist social work practices are required to address the outcomes of institutional sexism, class and racism injustice with respect to the lives of the marginalised women who are being influenced by the criminalisation of the society and the criminal justice system that have resulted in Prison Nation.

Desistance During Adulthood

Firstly, Laub and Sampson stated that the reason as to why most criminologists dedicate a significant amount of their time in studying adolescent behavior, is that this stage of life is very integral when it comes to determining the rate of illegal or criminal activities (Lilly, Cullen and Ball, 2018). In other words, if one were to plot a graph for age groups against crime rates, it would certainly peak at that point where the age reaches around 17. Prevalence and incidence are the two factors that cause this peak, although it would certainly be unfair to ascertain that crime is a problem mostly among teenagers.

Secondly, integration has an important role to play when it came to desistance or engagement in delinquency. Integration here refers to the extent to which an individual is involved with the conventional and socially acceptable groups, institutions and so on. The specific roles that they might have in these organizations can help build certain expectations, accompanied with sanctions of their own. They would feel morally obliged to fulfill them, which is akin to a sense of commitment (Lilly, Cullen and Ball, 2018). Establishing such strong bonds at a young age, along with the maintenance of such relationships during adolescence will definitely help maintain a low probability of criminal behavior, while weak bonds will only create newer pathways for engaging in illegal involvements.

Thirdly, Laub and Sampson mentioned Thornberry's Interactional Theory, which stated that human behavior was the result of social interaction, and thus a model that emphasized the interactive processes would be suitable for explaining it. Adolescents interact with other people, including their friends and parents, and although such attachments may be deemed casual, they have a profound effect on their behavior (Lilly, Cullen and Ball, 2018). In case the nature of interaction changes, it can affect the delinquent to a considerable extent.

Fourthly, the potential for antisocial behavior is carried by an individual throughout their life. People who have higher levels of such potential will tend to indulge in more violent crimes for a longer time span, most likely for their entire lives. The greater the need to satisfy their desires, the higher will be the tendency or likelihood of such crimes, as conventional methods usually fail to meet their expectations and satisfy their needs. The lack of opportunity in fulfilling those needs also play a major role in this aspect.
Finally, Laub and Sampson stated that if an individual exhibits antisocial behavior from their very childhood till adolescence, it can be said that the roots of such issues can typically be found in their early lives (Piquero, 2013), mostly at the time of birth. For instance, neuropsychological deficits might be the reason behind such delinquency, as they have the power to affect an individual's psychological traits from their very childhood. These deficits therefore make it imperative for the child to have low cognitive abilities, irritability and poor levels of self-control. Such difficult behavior is often the reason why these individuals often find themselves in difficult social scenarios.
The demographics of age is not the only factor that determines or affects desistance, which is quite clear from the above analysis. Social conditioning in the form of social relationships and the nature or level of interaction with others has a very important role to play in this regard.

Biosocial Risk and Protective Factors

The interconnected conceptual domains of protective and risk factors for adolescence risk behaviour, be it related to social environment, genetics or biology, personality or perceived environment. Some of the risk factors include chances of lowly perceived lives, family's perception towards, poor school work, etc. on the other hand, protective factors refer to quality schools, health and achievement values, good intelligence model for conventional behaviour etc. the amalgamation of these factors result in influencing adolescent risk behaviour, apart from health related and problem-based behaviours. it has been reviewed that the risk behaviours like unhealthy diet, illicit substance usage or other trauma, which will ultimately lead to illness, inadequacy in self-development, difficulties in getting employed, etc (Portnoy, Chen and Raine, 2013).

The World Health organization (WHO) conducted a thorough research on the risk and protective factors across 50 nations to identify that the risk factors being the family conflicts, materialistic friendships, etc. Similarly, WHO concluded that positive relationship among family and parents, having spiritual beliefs are related to protective factors. Both the protective and risk factors exist at various levels in the life of a human being (Farrington, Loeber and Ttofi, 2012). In simple words, the risk factors are responsible for increasing the chances of drug abuse and exposure to pertinent risks, while the protective factors are known to reduce the possibilities or occurrences of the risks. Every individual has to enact for strengthening the protective factors within the communities. Three of the most important protective factors are mentioned below:

Attachment and care

Research exhibits that anyone who had being under the care and supervision of his/her parents demonstrate a good chance of developing into a happy and settled person, with sound regulatory and problem-solving techniques. In fact, their constant interaction with parents have been found to result in getting good grades. Rather the involvement can be found to result in better development of the social and personal skills of the child.

Parental resilience

Parents who demonstrate the ability to manage with the stress and problems of everyday life are seen to be highly resilient and be ready to deal with difficult times. This in turn helps their children regarding how to seek help during crisis, as well as provide them with the ability to deal with various stages of life. It has been mostly found that parental resilience helps the children in learning problem solving and critical self-regulatory skills.

Anti-drug usage

It will enable the children to learn about the adverse effect of drug usage and thereby they will develop the mentality to abstain themselves from drugs.

In all of the above-mentioned scenarios, risk factor and protective factors are inter-related such as the risk of early aggressive behaviour can develop within a child suffering from lack of proper care and attachment with his/her parents. Lack of parental supervision and involvement with the activities of parents will lead them to a state of loneliness and stress, due to which they will not be able to deal with stress levels of daily life in later ages thus resulting in negative life events of behavioural health issues, anxiety, depression, etc (Rocque, Welsh and Raine, 2012). Without proper knowledge about the ill effect of drug usages, the children tend to become addicted thus ruining both their social and personal lives. 

 

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