Anomie Theory

             Anomie theory belongs to an important person by the name of Emile Durkheim. This theory was his most important work in his study and experimenting of deviant behavior. He created this theory by accident thinking it was the explanation of suicide. According to Durkheim, social organization is needed for an external force for each individual’s goal to be reached with collective order. When disruption occurs among collective order, goals may not be reached and traditional rules loose over behavioral rules. This lose causes a state of deregulation and normalness that is anomie. A regular function of the collective order usually breaks down at the occurrence of sudden depression, sudden prosperity, and rapid technology change. When this occurs the goal reaching among an individual becomes almost impossible if not difficult. Hard to adapt readily to a lower state of existence is the effect sudden depression have among an individual. Sudden prosperity affects the collective order of an individual because it makes that person think they can attain limitless wealth and power. The technology change can also make a person think of boundless hopes in effect to the collective order. According to Durkeim, these conditions among the collective order can lead to suicide particularly in Western industrialized societies.
             Durkeim didn’t mention about crimes with the disruption of the collective order in his anomie theory but another great scholar by the name of Robert K. Merton did. He elaborated on the thesis of Durkeim. His elaboration and his work showed the details of why there was deviance and why it occurs. Merton distinguished between two elements in his elaboration. The elements of social and cultural structures: “the culturally defined goals human beings are enjoined to pursue and the social structure that regulates and controls the acceptable modes or means for the pursuit of goals and interests.” He also stated in his

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Anomie Theory. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 12:51, December 06, 2016, from