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Merton’s Strain Theory

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Essay title: Merton’s Strain Theory

Merton’s Strain Theory

I learned that Robert Merton borrowed “anomie” from Emile Durkheim. Anomie is the breakdown or absence of social norms and values. This website had little content but was very informative. It outlined the five modes of adaptation to strain.

The five modes are conformity, innovation, ritualism, retreatism and rebellion. In the mode of conformity, individuals follow culturally approved goals and the accepted means to achieve these goals. In the second mode, innovation, individuals follow the accepted goals, but do not accept the desired means to achieve them.

The middle mode would be ritualism, where individuals reject and do not follow society’s goals. Even though they do not accept these goals, they still continue to live by the rules. The next module is called retreatism. In this mode, individuals abandon both the goals of society ans the accepted means of achieving them.

The fifth and final mode is entitles rebellion. In this stage, individuals have no regards for accepted goals and the means of achieving them. At this stage, they achieve their goals any way they can.

This website also says that deviance is a direct symptom of the social structure. It also states that the best ways to achieve the accepted goals of society are through hard work and education.

On the myspace page I found, the boy is deviant

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