Exploring The Biological And Psychological Characteristics Of Criminals

2011 words - 8 pages

The purpose of this assignment is to examine the biological and psychological explanations of crime. It will primarily focus on Cesare Lombroso’s theory in that he believed that criminals could be determined and identified by their physical appearance and attributes. It will cover Bowlby’s theory of maternal deprivation and how childhood violence and trauma can affect a person’s behaviour and personality. It will further explain the strengths and weaknesses and how criminals are perceived in contemporary Britain today.
Cesare Lombroso was an Italian criminologist born in Venice, Italy in 1836. He went on to become a university professor who became renowned worldwide for his studies and theories. Lombroso worked in the field of Characterology, which meant he studied the difference between mental and physical characteristics. Lombroso was also a physician, psychiatrist and a coroner he worked at various mental institutions therefore allowing him the opportunity to examine people from all aspects of life, he knew that by doing so he would be able to collect the relevant information that was needed and which would be essential to base his research on (www.Britannica.com).
Lombroso carried out investigations on the post mortem bodies of criminals, when opened up it went on to reveal that they were physically different from non criminals. He maintained that criminals have stigmata (signs) and that these stigmata’s consisted of abnormal dimensions of the skull and jaw, asymmetries in the face and other parts of the body, he even claimed that different criminals have different physical characteristics which he could distinguish (www.brocku.com).
Lombroso argued that criminality is inherited, his theory was biological determinism which means that people don’t have any choice in which way they turn out. There is no free will involved the way they turn out is genetic so if the parents are criminal then they are more likely to be criminal. He believed that the born criminal could be identified by physiognomic defects as this confirmed a criminal as savage or atavistic (what he sees as a throwback to an earlier stage of evolution) (www.Newworldencyclopedia.org). He looked at defects such as a sloping brow, which symbolises low intellect he also suggested that a renowned jaw, symbolised strong passion. Lombroso believes that people bearing such defects behaved in a different way to the rest of society and have a low ability to show any kind of guilt or remorse.
The weakness that was established in this theory found that these associations were later shown to be highly inconsistent or inexistent, and Lombroso had not used a control group therefore having nothing of any substantial nature to compare his results to. This became Lombroso’s biggest flaw in his research and theory. Due to this weakness the theories that were based on the environment causation of criminality that then became dominant meant that he believes the environment makes...

Find Another Essay On Exploring the Biological and Psychological Characteristics of Criminals

Bridging Environmental, Psychological and Biological Mechanisms for effective treatment of PTSD and Schizophrenic mental disorder

603 words - 3 pages impossible to overestimate its impact on modern thought. Since it was first compared to antidisestablishmentarianism much has been said concerning Bridging Environmental, Psychological and Biological Mechanisms for effective treatment of PTSD and Schizophrenic mental disorder by the upper echelons of progressive service sector organisations, who just don't like that sort of thing. Relax, sit back and gasp as I display the rich tapestries of Bridging

The best and worst theories that discribe why crimes happen (eg biological, psychological and sociological.

747 words - 3 pages The purpose of this paper is to discuss the three major theories of criminology. This paper will talk about the theories that best and worst describe why crime happens. The three major theories of crime are: biological, psychological and sociological. In further examining this paper you will see discussions of personal opinions of the author.The biological theory states that criminals are born and they are not made. I feel that the biological

Exploring Psychological Explanations of Criminal Behaviour

2311 words - 9 pages large number of children in a family influences delinquent behaviour? 2. To what extent a large number of children in a family promotes the development of psychopathy? 3. Is there a gender difference between participants coming from large families and their scores on the psychopathy scale? 2. LITERATURE REVIEW There is an extensive body of research suggesting and exploring the link between a large number of children in the family and

The Biological and Psychodynamic Models of Abnormality

595 words - 2 pages approaches on understanding thoughts and emotions. All models are unique and similar to each other, but the biological model and psychodynamic model seem to be the most extreme when compared to each other.The biological model takes on more of a medical perspective, which is somewhat self-explanatory in its title. It takes its roots in human biological or genetic makeup. The main focus of the biological approach is the brain and how psychological

Morality and Punishment of Criminals

1434 words - 6 pages Morality and Punishment of Criminals . British law states that it is he who bares responsibility for the transgression committed who must be reprimanded. However, there is much controversy as to where responsibility for moral action lies, or indeed, whether anyone can be held accountable. As J. L. Mackie suggests, "an agent is responsible for all and only his intentional actions." Thus for the punishment of

The Public´s Perceptions of Victims and criminals

1082 words - 4 pages abducted. A top executive for Lifetime Network had this to say about John Walsh and his commitment to bring justice to the victims’ loved ones, “For more than two decades John Walsh has been leading the fight against crime and it’s an honor to partner with him on bringing back this important show” (Welch, 2013). The public’s perception of victims and criminals vary greatly among the masses here in the United States. According to research

The Strengths and Limitations of the Biological Model of Abnormality

796 words - 3 pages The Strengths and Limitations of the Biological Model of Abnormality This model uses physical illness as a model for psychological disorder, suggesting that like physical illness, mental illness has an underlying bodily cause. It proposes that genetic, organic or chemical disorders cause metal illnesses which give rise to

The Psychological and Physiciological Effects of Guilt

543 words - 2 pages Abstract:     Guilt has physiological and psychological effects. The psychological effects can include something bad, such as feelings of worthlessness or inferiority. Guilt can also serve in a positive way as a motivator. A person may suffer physiological effects such as insomnia and physical pain. Discussion:     Guilt is feelings of culpability, especially for imagined offenses or from a

The Biological and Chemical Effects of Organic and Chemical Fertilizers

1693 words - 7 pages With the large and growing population, food sources are increasingly more important. In order to increase the crop yield, fertilizers are used. These fertilizers can come in two forms, inorganic and organic. Also, though these fertilizers may help the human race increase food supply, fertilizer, in excess, can damage the natural environment, killing other organisms. Fertilizer is comprised of three major macronutrients and whether it is organic

The Characteristics of Adolescents

3113 words - 12 pages emotions and the whole pattern of psychological characteristics is restructured as the individual strives to attain a sense of identity. Development in intellectual functioning provides the adolescent with the ability to question himself, his family, his world, and his values (Garrod, Smulyan, Powers, and Kilkenny, 1992). Adolescents begin to develop principles- not necessarily those that adults would like to have them develop

The Characteristics of God

2646 words - 11 pages The Characteristics of God In Section eleven of An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding Hume argues that if a teleological argument is sufficient proof for a god, then that god must have deficiencies in morality, power, benevolence and intelligence. I will present Hume’s argument and the subsequent objections he considers. As well, I will defend Hume’s final position by giving my best objection to it and explaining how that objection fails

Similar Essays

Exploring The Personalities Of Convicted Criminals

1748 words - 7 pages For many years, law enforcement and other officials have had problems with the criminals and inmates they control. People from all walks of life commit crimes. Some of these crimes are small and insignificant, and some of them are gruesome and horrible. Violent offenders and non-violent offenders have many similarities but also some differences. One of the main differences is that, 80% of the two million people in prison and jail are male, and

The Biological And Psychological Drives Behind Consumerism

961 words - 4 pages the power of consumerism win over our rationality? In this situation, we pretend to regard the primary cause of the impulse consumerism is the commercial seductions. The truth, however, is that the shopping indulgences does not originate from a manipulation of the commercial advertisements, but rather a biological and psychological drive planted in every one of us. The biological and psychological drives for our consumerism are evidenced by: in

A Comparison Of Biological And Psychological Explanations Of Schizophrenia

743 words - 3 pages A Comparison of Biological and Psychological Explanations of Schizophrenia Both the biological and the psychological explanations of schizophrenia are supported by empirical evidence which justify their explanations. However ,within the biological explanation there is the genetic explanation which is used largely based on scientific research such as that of Gottesman’s research using meta-analysis which looked at

Biological/Psychological Factors Of Crime Essay

1205 words - 5 pages . Scientists in such fields as genetics, biochemistry, endocrinology, neuro­science, immunology, and psychophysiology have been intensively studying aspects of human behavior that are relevant to the criminologist.Psychological theories of crime begin with the view that individual differences in behavior may make some people more predisposed to committing criminal acts. These differences may arise from personality characteristics, biological