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Annotation on Neighborhoods and Crime

It is speculated that environmental factors in neighborhoods affect the way people behave and the crimes they commit in the region. The study of crimes and neighborhoods has been used as a vehicle of finding out whether environmental factors surrounding a particular neighborhood affect the pattern of crime in the region and consequently the subsequent generations. These studies have taken into account the childhood development, neighborhood resources, parenting styles, social economic factors, and the degree of social cohesion in a particular neighborhood. The studies have also raised concerns over how environmental factors can be contained in order to combat crimes in neighborhoods. This paper will consult scholarly material on the subject, and then present some points of view in an evaluative annotation form.

Hirschfield, A. and K. J. Bowers. “The Effect of Social Cohesion on Levels of Recorded Crime in Disadvantaged Areas.” Urban Studies 34. 8 (1997): 1274-1295.

This article endeavors to find out the correlation between social cohesion and crime in neighborhoods by carrying out a cross comparison between neighborhoods characterized by lack of social cohesion and neighborhoods characterized by social cohesion. This study uses both quantitative and qualitative design to approve/disapprove the hypothesis of the study: Crimes in disadvantaged neighborhoods, which lack social cohesion, supersede crimes in disadvantaged neighborhood, which embrace social cohesion.

The article evaluates factors that contribute to social cohesion by gathering data from the British Population Census. Hirschfield and Bowers (1279) assessed the housing composition, the demographic characteristics, and the social economic factors of various regions in this neighborhood. Hirschfield and Bowers found out that poor social cohesion is evident in more disadvantaged neighborhoods than less disadvantaged neighborhoods (1287). Consequently, neighborhoods with low social cohesion are characterised by higher crime rate than neighborhoods with high social cohesion.

Lyons, Christopher J., Community (Dis) Organization and Racially Motivated Crime 1. The American Journal of Sociology 113. 3 (2007): 815-863.

The aim of this article is to explore the motive behind crimes committed by white people as well as the black people living in Chicago community. The study employs reliable data gathered from census, police stations, as well as surveys carried out to assess the opinion of people living in the Chicago community. This study is comprised of an alternative hypothesis that examines the rate of racial hate crimes emanating from competition of resources among members of the community as well as social organization and disorganization within the community.

By using multivariate data analysis, Lyons (848) found out that blacks fall victims of racial hate in neighborhoods that have the capacity of exercising social control. However, crimes related to resources were only apparent when the whites felt threatened about a presumed shortage. The whites, on the other hand, fall victims of racial hate in traditionally disorganized neighborhoods that lack the capacity of exercising social control due to residential instability. Likewise, crimes related to resources were only apparent when the blacks felt threatened about a presumed shortage (Lyons 821).

Bell, Jeannine. Hate Thy Neighbor: Violent Racial Exclusion and the Persistence of Segregation. The Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law 47. 5 (2007): 49-79.

Bell seeks to outline the implication of racial discrimination in the housing sphere of Ohio community. Bell analyses the intimidating historical incidences carried out to discriminate the minority who desired to live in neighborhoods dominated by whites. Bell (55) advocated for a view of evaluating how crimes associated with racial background could be eliminated by finding ways that create a balance between laws governing racial discrimination and laws governing housing. As a result, Bell examines the challenges involved in creating a balance that embraces rational concepts of integration (67-73). After a careful examination, Bell (73-77) filed a report that provides guidelines that should be followed in a bid to eradicate racial discrimination within the Ohio neighborhood.

Sampson, Robert, Stephen Raudenbush, and Felton Earls. Neighborhoods and Violent Crime: A Multilevel Study of Collective Efficacy, Science 277 (1997): 918-922.

This article seeks to find out the correlation between improved social cohesion through interventions and crime in neighborhoods through a cross comparison of different ethnic groups living in Chicago community. The authors dwell on two questions: Why is poverty related to violence? And what initiative should a community take to increase social cohesion and consequently reduce violence within neighborhoods.

The article evaluates factors that contribute to social cohesion by gathering data from Human development department of the Chicago community. Sampson, Stephen, and Felton (919) assessed the level of cohesion by taking into account the existence of diverse racial/ethnic backgrounds in this community while selecting a sample size for survey. By using a Likert-type scale, Sampson, Stephen, and Felton assessed the level of the community’s social cohesion with regard to attitude towards children’s behaviors; As a result, the researchers identified the factors that contribute to poor social cohesion (920). Sampson, Stephen, and Felton (921-922 ) eventually found out that the presence of informal social control structures, which provide guidance to children, as well as high levels of cohesion facilitate reduction of crimes in this neighborhood.

Wikstrom, Per-Olof H. and Rolf Loeber. 2000. “Do Disadvantaged Neighborhoods Cause Well-Adjusted Children to Become Adolescent Delinquents? A Study of Male Juvenile Serious Offending, Individual Risk and Protective Factors, and Neighborhood Context.” Criminology 38. 4 (2000): 1109-1142.

The aim of this article is to examine the correlation between juvenile offences and disadvantaged neighborhood in reference to male teenagers. Wikstrom and Rolf achieved this by meticulously analyzing the socioeconomic background of participants’ neighborhoods, the characteristics of the participants [protective as well as risk characteristics], and the offences committed by the teenagers (1119).

This study uses qualitative design to approve/disapprove the hypothesis of the study: Crimes emanating from juvenile male are attributed to risk characteristics, which are normally developed by male juvenile who live in disadvantaged neighborhoods. Wikstrom and Rolf drew their conclusion after analyzing data collected from interviews of two groups of male pupils from Pittsburgh School (1129). The authors found out that boys who exhibited risk characteristics have a high likelihood of committing juvenile crimes than boys who exhibited protective characteristic despite the socioeconomic background of their neighborhood. On the contrary, the results show that social economic background only influences boys who exhibited protective characteristics (Wikstrom and Rolf 1134). And for this reason, Wikstrom and Rolf concluded that disadvantaged neighborhoods have a negative impact on boys who exhibit protective characteristics, and this may eventually lead them to juvenile offending(1138).

Brimicombe, Allen J., Ralphs, Martin P., Sampson, Alice, Tsui, Hoi Yuen, An Analysis of the Role of Neighborhood Ethnic Composition in the Geographical Distribution of Racially Motivated Incidents, British Journal of Criminology 41. 2 (2001): 293-308.

This paper engages Brimicombe et al. works to investigate the efficacy of using Geographical Information System (GIS) in coming up with a credible report that outlines geographical patterns of crimes emanating from racial background within a particular neighborhood. Brimicombe et al. (297) points out that, by collecting data related to crimes relative to racial background from a police station in London, the GIS could easily analyse all these crimes, hence creating an avenue for appropriate evaluation of the role played by ethnicity in escalating crimes in this neighborhood in order to facilitate prevention. After carrying out a correlation analysis, Brimicombe et al. (304) found out that ethnicity plays a major role in escalating crimes associated with racial background in this region, with a high prevalence rate in regions dominated by whites.

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