SAGE Journal Articles
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This study uses time-series regression techniques to examine the impact of decommodification on homicide rates in the United States from the institutional anomie perspective. Although recent studies have examined the impact of decommodification on cross-national variations in homicide rates, little attention has been paid to historical trends in this relationship. Our findings support institutional anomie theory when decommodification is conceptualized as a historically variant and contextual variable. No support was found for more intricate specifications measuring annual variation in the level of decommodification, and no support was found for alternative modes of periodization. Finally, the results also point to a temporal shift in the correlates of homicide rates between the two distinct historical periods, and the results have methodological implications for conducting time-series analyses.
The researchers explore the various buffers that society provides when there is an economic downturn (decommodification) and how being buffered impacts the homicide rate. Additionally, the article discusses numerous control variables that also have an impact on the homicide rate.
Questions to Consider:
- Define decommodification.
- Do the researchers’ findings support that social engineering has magnified social problems. Explain.
- What do the authors note are the issues of examining historical data?
- Why did the research have to include prohibition, mob violence and military service as control variables?
- What are the researchers findings regarding decommodification and violence?
Article 2: Muftić, L. (2006). Advancing institutional anomie theory: A microlevel examination connecting culture, institutions, and deviance. International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, 50, 630–653.
Institutional anomie theory (IAT) contends that crime can be explained by an examination of American society, particularly the exaggerated emphasis on economic success inherent in American culture, which has created a “cheating orientation” that permeates structural institutions, including academia. Consistent with its macrosocial perspective, previous tests of IAT have examined IAT variables at the structural level only. The current study tests the robustness of IAT by operationalizing IAT variables at the individual level and looking at a minor form of deviance, student cheating. The author also examines the role statistical modeling has in testing the theory at the microlevel. Undergraduates, 122 American born and 48 international, were surveyed about their cheating behaviors and adherence to economic goal orientations. Results related to the hypothesis that American students, relative to foreign-born students, will have an increased adherence to economic goal orientations that increase cheating behaviors are presented, as are suggestions for future studies.
This article addresses the impact of the American culture of success and the impact that it has on crime. Specifically, the researchers compare U.S. born students with non-U.S.-born students and their attitudes toward cheating.
Questions to Consider:
- Explain institutional anomie theory (IAT).
- Identify our social institutions.
- Do the findings of this study support the theory that culture impacts deviance? Explain.
In the United States and beyond, there is often a wide disconnect between grounded empirical evidence about the sex industry and policies on sex work and human trafficking. In this introduction, we briefly review empirical and critical scholarly literature on sex work and human trafficking policy within the United States. We then introduce three sociological articles that provide compelling empirical research on individuals who work in the sex trade as well as those who organize on behalf of sex workers and trafficked individuals. We conclude by inviting more sociologists to narrow the gap between reliable empirical evidence and policies on sex work and human trafficking, and we urge activists and policy makers to listen.
This article investigates the role that human trafficking plays in supplying workers in the sex industry.
Questions to Consider:
- How does the U.S. State Department of Defense define human trafficking?
- What happens to the majority of human trafficking victims?
- What do the authors identify as the ultimate goal of this article?