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The Relativity of Deviance, 4th edition by John Curra is a primer on the relativity of deviance--the idea that deviance cannot be explained in terms of absolutes, nor can it be understood apart from its social setting. The book is frequently used alongside all of the major core deviance textbooks on the market. It answers such questions as: What is deviant? What is deviant behavior? How should the deviant be treated? Why is the same act sometimes praised and sometimes condemned? Readers will see that what qualifies as deviance varies from place to place, time to time, and situation to situation. The book explores some of the most frequent contexts for deviant behavior-- sex, violence, theft, drugs, suicide, and mental disorders--in such a way that challenges definitive or objective judgments.
This engaging and informative book, by award-winning sociologist and criminologist John Curra, offers a valuable perspective on attitudes and behaviors labeled as deviant. The Relativity of Deviance, Fourth Edition, explores the meanings and constructions of social deviance and social reactions to it, he answers such questions as: What is deviance? What comprises deviant behavior? How are deviants treated? How is deviance socially constructed and socially sustained? Why is the same attitude, behavior, or condition praised in one situation and condemned in another? Through insightful and thought-provoking examples and informed accounts, the author illustrates that deviance cannot be explained or understood in terms of absolutes or essential characteristics nor can it be explained or understood apart from its social setting. This book approaches sex, violence, theft, drugs, suicide, rape, and mental disorders in a way that shows the critical role of sociocultural factors and social reactions in constructions of deviance and crime.