Pub. date: 2007 | Online Pub. Date: March 15, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939645 | Print ISBN: 9781412916080 | Online ISBN: 9781412939645| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this handbook
Chapter 39: Criminology
DAVID F. LUCKENBILL & KIRK MILLER
Criminology Criminology is the body of knowledge regarding crime as a social phenomenon. In an early analysis, Edwin Sutherland (1947) observed that criminology examines the processes of making laws, breaking laws, and reacting to the breaking of laws. These processes are three aspects of a somewhat unified sequence of interactions. Certain acts which are regarded as undesirable are defined by the political society as crimes. In spite of this definition, some people persist in the behavior and thus commit crimes; the political society reacts by punishment or other treatment or by prevention. This sequence of interactions is the object-matter of criminology. (P. 1) Accordingly, criminology can be divided into three branches: the study of law making, the study of law breaking, and the study of reactions to law breaking. Because the subjects of law making and reactions to law breaking are considered elsewhere in this Handbook , we will focus ...