Discussion Question
As a judgemental as we are, I think Lombrosos success was based on the fact that as humans we seek to categorise what is normal and what is abnormal.It would be very easy if we could simply look at a person and determine if they are likely to offend or not. There would be very little crime because our prevention methods would single out individuals - however dangerous this would be.Personally, I find Lomboros theory quite generalised and non-specific. Im sure the liklihood of all of us offending would increase if we experienced some a circumstance that affected our mental and emotional wellbeing...... What do you all think

Lombrosos theory is generalized and subject to interpretation. Suggesting that criminal behavior is genetic and can be distinguished by physical characteristics leads to racial,  stereotypes and physical profiling to name a few.  This flies in the face of the theory of innocent until proven guilty.  If one were able to distinguish criminals based on their genetics and their physical characteristics then theoretically you could stop crime before it happens by identifying all of those that were predisposed to commit the specific type of crime. While this may sound like a great crime fighting method, it tramples civil liberties and reduces humankind to a Salem witch hunt type of existence.  Further, this theory ignores environment, nurturing, socioeconomic and morality factors in the determination of whether or not to commit a crime.

Lombroso was successful in part due to the nature of humans to try and understand that which is different or deviates from what a society considers as the norm. There seems to be an inherent reservation towards those who are different and crime is such a galvanizing act in any society that it is only natural that theories abound to understand those who commit crime and prevent future crimes.


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