Refuting Article Analysis Essay
While many researchers support the usefulness of this theory and state that has a strong theoretic foundation, some of them argue that it does not address the aspect of ones resilience to the environment. Pratt (2016) proposes a different strategy that builds on some elements of the life-course theory but uses a different approach to peoples behavior. The author argues that it includes factors that the life-course perspective fails to acknowledge.
For example, he presents multiple arguments that show that the life-course theory may prove useless in addressing ones personality (Pratt, 2016). As a contrast, the scholar offers an approach which improves the original perspective with the concept of self-control. In this case, this notion is proposed by the author as a dynamic ability of a person who can change over time. It is also viewed as an essential part of the decision-making process. Therefore, the researcher attempts to prove the life-course theory is not valid on its own because it ignores a part of peoples personality.
The article outlines ten major propositions which prove that the self-control theory is more useful in the field of criminology than the life-course perspective. First few points state that self-control changes as an individual becomes older. While infants and children may have low self-control due to their level of development, young people are more susceptible to self-control depletion because of their temper. On the other hand, older people are capable of due to their life experiences.
This argument better explains the age-crime curve often used by criminologists (Pratt, 2016). The following propositions argue that negative experiences can be overcome with self-control. Individuals can also exercise self-regulation while trying to cope with life events that would significantly affect them otherwise. While the life-course theory may portray people as having no control over their decisions, this approach places more responsibility on individuals. This strategy also explains ones choice to engage with society and the quality of interactions a person can have with his or her friends, family, and colleagues.
Therefore, this article refutes the universal use of the life-choice theory, presenting an alternative which accounts for peoples ability to make decisions. While the original approach centers on the environment of a person, it fails to consider his or her individuality and personality that may not be influenced by outside sources. A similar theme is also represented in the article by Fox, Jennings, and Farrington (2015), who argue that the life-course perspective should include psychopathy and behavioral control into the factors of influence. It can be hard to analyze which parts of ones personality come from some internal traits and which are a result of nurture. Thus, this theory can exist alongside the original concept.
The life-course theory can be considered one of the fundamental approaches in criminology. It should be used to create crime control policies because it allows people to focus not only on the current motives and surroundings of a person but also on his or her deeper reasons for committing crimes. This approach goes beyond rationality and inherent nature of an individual and examines a complex structure that exists around every person. Although it may fail to recognize ones ability for self-regulation, it still offers significant information about ones behaviors. This theory is positive and focused on recovery, which also makes it highly valuable.