Robert Merton and Deviance

Deviant behavior is popular in society today, especially with the way this economy has been. Merton’s theory of deviant behavior stems from the actions of those who have something preventing them from becoming successful. Granted, college is expensive. Those who truly want to get an education will, even if it is almost financially impossible, but they will find the means to do it. Others, however, who grow frustrated if there is no way for them to get into college, or afford it, may possibly rebel or get into bad habits. I praise all of you, because you are all here for one reason, to succeed and fulfill a successful life.

This topic reminds me of a book that I read this semester for one of my other classes, “Ain’t No 
Makin’ It,” by Jay Macleod. Stereotypes are thrown out like nothing, but the ones who are successful in the book are a group of African American teenagers who want to make something more of their lives after growing up in a projects complex. They came from tough childhoods but want to make something of themselves. The group of Italian-American teenagers are the ones who feel that they can’t make it in life due to the low-income families they were raised by. Instead of going to school, they resort to drugs, alcohol, and violence, because they feel that they will not amount to anything. I highly recommend this book!

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One response to “Robert Merton and Deviance

  1. Really nice overview on deviant theory. Poverty is an endless cycle and really leads to the creation of deviance and struggles within a community.

    I’d like to check this book out. Sociology really does help explain a lot more than people think.

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