No universal paradigm can explain the nature of the crime. However, some underlying drivers can motivate people to commit it. Their nature can be biological, sociological, or psychological. It does not mean that it can be only one of them making people criminals. Sometimes it can include two or all three. An example of the primary biological cause can be schizophrenia. People with schizophrenia can harm or even kill other people believing that they are invaders from another world or for another reason born out of their confused brain. This mental disorder is mostly caused by malformations in some brain regions resulting from genetic factors (Ripke et al., 2014).
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Sociological factors paired with biological ones can also be a reason for committing a crime. For instance, poor people may shoplift food out of necessity. Often in such cases, these people understand the moral unacceptability of their deed. Nonetheless, their hunger can supersede the moral code.
According to Hollin (2013), psychological factors can become a reason for unlawful behavior provided there is a fertile social environment. For example, the person’s mind can become unstable due to stress or depression induced by social factors like family or work, which may involve him or her in criminal activities like using narcotics or even killing. There can also be cases when biological, psychological, and sociological theories intertwine (Hollin, 2013). Inborn impairments of the brain can be dormant until environmental issues like the lack of parental supervision, school bullying or other factors cause these inner malfunctions to alter a person’s perception, resulting in the lack of guilt or remorse. This can lead to criminal behavior. The three agents can all shed some light on the nature of the crime, but there is an apparent need to view them in connection to each other.
Hollin, C. R. (2013). Psychology and crime: An introduction to criminological psychology. London, UK: Routledge.
Ripke, S., Neale, B. M., Corvin, A., Walters, J. T., Farh, K. H., Holmans, P. A.,… Pers, T. H. (2014). Biological insights from 108 schizophrenia-associated genetic loci. Nature, 511(7510), 421-427.