The Strain Theory Essay Sample - New York Essays.
Agnew’s (1999) general strain theory explains possible relationships between school violence and socioeconomic stressors. Principles of general strain theory include discrepancy between immediate or future goals and methods to achieve these goals. This discrepancy may be due to blocked opportunities or inadequate skills and abilities.
Criminologist strain theories in the 1980’s put the earlier strain theories under attack by arguing the theories had little effect on crime research. The newer criminologist argued that the older theories should be abandoned (Agnew, 1985).
Merton’s strain theory, in general, is a theory found in both sociology and criminology that states that society puts certain pressures, referred to as strains, on individuals to achieve socially accepted goals e.g. the American dream, despite having the means to do so, may lead these individuals to commit crimes as a method of conforming to social ideals, or rebelling against them.
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Building on the foundation of general strain theory: Specifying the types of strain most likely to lead to crime and delinquency R Agnew Journal of research in crime and delinquency 38 (4), 319-361, 2001.
Agnew developed a new version of strain theory, called General Strain Theory. It focused on individual-level influences of strain and tried to explain why strained individuals are more likely than non-strained individuals to commit crimes. Agnew states that there are three major types of negative relationships that cause strain.
Agnew's (1985) revised strain theory argues that delinquency results from the inability to escape legally from painful or aversive situations. There is much indirect support for the theory, with experimental and survey data indicating that delinquency is associated with a wide variety of aversive situations.