Evaluation of labelling

  • Emphasis on negative effects of labelling gives criminals a victim status. Realists see this is ignoring the real victims of crime
  • Ignores that individuals may actively choose deviance
  • Why do people commit crimes prior to labels?
  • It implies no labels = no deviance. The people who commit crimes but are not labelled on deviant? People are unaware they are deviant until labelled?
  • It fails to examine links between labelling and capitalism, so focuses on middle range officials such as police who apply labels rather than the capitalist class that make the rules.
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