Issues in Crime

Course Code: SOCI 236

Academic Year: 2023-2024

Crime is an ever-present facet of life in modern society. Crimes and criminals are presented to us on a daily basis through the media, television, films, videos and true-crime books. Some of us will be victims of property or personal crimes in our lifetimes. However, the reality of crime is rarely glimpsed by Canadian citizens. Many people fear crime in their own neighbourhoods but have no idea what the actual rate of various crimes is. The nature of crime is constantly changing, reflecting social and cultural transformations occurring in our society. Who commits crime and why? How do we explain criminal behaviours? Why are certain behaviours deemed to be 'criminal' and subject to legal intervention while others are not? What defences are permitted to a charge of criminal conduct? What types of crime are committed in Canada and with what frequency? These are all questions that stimulate our curiosity and are important to our society and ourselves. In this course, we will address these questions and many others while examining various types of crime, criminals and the theories used to explain their behaviour.