Criminology as resilience and coherence. Also know as

Criminology is the scientific study of crime and criminals. It allows people to study crime in the same way science is studied. This was suggested by August Comte who stated that society could be observed and researched in the same way as science.

Theoretical explanations or hypothetical clarifications describe how society controls the rates and actives surrounding crime. These speculations depend on occasions happen all through social orders at the time they were developed, the thoughts around these hypotheses shaped in 1764. 

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Theoretical explantations have a direct link to how a society is sets out to control crime.
They are based on what us happening in societies at the time they are developed.

The three explanations or clarifications of crime are: 

Positivist explanations
Realist explanations 
Interactionlist explanation


Positive criminology is a new conceptual perspective of criminology, encompassing several theories and models. Positive criminology refers to a focus on individuals’ encounters with forces and influences that are experienced as positive, which distance them from deviance and crime, whether by means of formal and informal therapy programs and interventions, such as self-help groups; through emphasis of positive social elements, such as exposure to goodness, social acceptance, and reintegrative shaming; or based on positive personal traits, such as resilience and coherence. Also know as rehabilitation. The perspective of positive criminology broadens that of traditional criminology, which focuses mainly on understanding the factors and processes that lead individuals and groups to what is defined as deviant and criminal behaviour. Positive criminology is implemented in treatment and rehabilitation of individuals and groups that have demonstrated deviant and criminal behaviour, by emphasising positive experiences that may potentially prevent or discourage continued criminal behaviour. Positive criminology is also expressed in prevention based on a positive approach. There are three main approaches in Positive Criminology. Biological, Psychological (family) and Psychological (culture).

All three approaches share the idea that criminal behaviour is determined by factors outside the individual’s control; if a cause can be found then so can a cure.


Biological explanations of crime assume that some people are ‘born criminals’, who are physiologically distinct from non-criminals. The most famous proponent of the biological approach is Cesare Lombroso.
Cesare Lombroso was an Italian criminologist and physician. He was also the founder of the Italian  school of positive criminology.
Lombroso suggested that a criminal could be identified based on physical attraction. He believed that criminals looked very different from law abiding citizens. Lombroso stated that a criminal’s features could be genetically determined characteristics such as enormous ears, high cheekbones, prominent eyebrows, large eyes extra nipples, fingers or toes and someone who is insensitive to pain. Lombroso’s general theory suggested criminals are distinguished from non-criminals by multiple physical anomalies. Lombroso associated these stigmata with primitive man. He postulated that criminals represented a reversion to a primitive or subhuman type of man characterised by physical features reminiscent of apes and lower primates, and early man and to some extent preserved, he said, in modern “savages”. The behaviour these biological “throwbacks” will inevitably be contrary to the rules and expectations of modern civilised societies. This condition was called atavism. Atavism is the tendency to revert to ancestral type. These theological roots were firmly embedded in one of the most influential books ever written, Charles Darwin’s The Origin Of the Species, published in the 1870’s.

Lombroso’s claim was discredited but 200 years later people still make assumptions on physical stereotypes. This was discussed in an academic paper by Bull and Green (1980). It was also researched by Medrick who was able to discover a pattern of inherited automatic nervous system, which meant that some criminals had no choice but to commit crime due to a genetic factor.

Psychological – Family 

Sociological approaches suggest that crime is shaped by factors external to the individual. For example, their experiences within their peer group or neighbourhood (culture) or the family.

Psychological positivists suggest that people commit crime because of internal psychological factors over which they have little or no control. There is a criminal personality (Burke, 2009). Psychological positivists suggest that there are certain internal factors which drive an individual to become a criminal. It is important to note that psychological positivists see criminals as having internal psychological elements than the biological positivists who claim that criminal are born with criminal attributes (body structure). They claim that there are certain internal psychological elements due to which an individual commits crime. Those internal psychological factors may be due to lack of parental love and attachment in early childhood, broken family tragedies, parent’s separation, a feeling of loneliness and alienation from peer group, negligence from siblings and teachers, etc. Therefore, due to such factors, an individual engaged in a criminal behaviour. 

Longitude studies have been carried out in the USA and the UK which found a correlation between criminals and their families. In 1994 a criminologist, Farringdon claimed 2 things:

Criminal offending is part of a larger syndrome of anti social behaviour.
Anti-social or criminal behaviour starts at an early ages and develops into a long and serious criminal career. 

This syndrome is passed on from one generation to the next. Families are labelled as the problem. However, with every problem comes a solution. It could be suggest that intervention

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