How is the study of crime different from the ways crime is portrayed in movies, literature, and television?
The issues of crime are portrayed differently in movies, literature and television as compared to the real world. The primary different lies in incentives. Criminals often have a real-world incentive of survival. They commit crimes often as a means of earning money or funds to help pay for a specific product or service. A large cause of this is related to a lack of skills development and training. As many criminals lack to skills needed for high paying jobs, they instead elect to use crime as a means to earn a living. This ultimately results in high incarcerations rates and broken families with minority communities. These issues are exacerbated by legislation such as the war on crime which imprisoned a large number of African Americans and Hispanic Americans for very long sentences. These issues have also spilled over into how crime victims are harmed during the apprehension process. George Floyd was a very high-profile incident where a police officer kneeled on an African Americans neck and killed them for 8:46 seconds, highlighting the racial inequality of America (Ferni, 2000).
Moving often times look to avoid these controversial elements as they are not conducive to sales of movie tickets. Instead, mainstream media looks to avoid many of these controversial elements to appeal to a wider audience. This audience in turn, reciprocates these initiatives by purchasing crime thrillers in high volumes in the movie theater. Unfortunately, they do not represent economic reality. For one many of these movies do not have the ability to depict all of the elements that impact crime such as legislation, family environment, and so forth. This is due primarily to the overall time limitations of film that require action sequences in order to keep the audience engaged. Likewise character development is heavily skewed as characters can not fully articulate the many struggles they face within a film. Many firms look at economic background or family background and ignore many of the more important figures related to crime. In essence, movies, literature and film have constraints that ultimately can not be capture in real world circumstances. These constraints include time, financial resources, and author biases related to minority treatment.
1. Ferni, Enrico. Criminal Sociology. New York: D. Appleton
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