Deviance is a varied and contested terrain which defies unidimensional conclusions. Discuss with practical examples.

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dano7744 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It is a contested terrain because what one finds deviant another may not. Many years ago homosexual behavior was considered deviant. Society tends to affix labels on all types of behavior and those who practice it. The concept of deviance is so subjective. If you grew up in a primitive Baptist church where the speaking of tongues was common, who is to say that the followers are deviant? A Jew? A Muslim? Almost any subculture in America could be accused of practicing deviant you ride a Harley Davidson motorcycle? Yes, are you deviant? No, do you think people that do are deviant? Why do we have to have a label for everything?

leslie2k | Student

Conclusions?  The questions vary between the audiences and their point of view provides an answer for each group.  However, real deviance is an unsettled issue.  

Mental illness or disorders are conditions that are ever increasing from the original number of DSM 100 conditions to over 300 present-day categories (Goode, 2011).   These change with political views and policies.

Homosexuality and nympomanic were once regarded as a mental condition that qualified for treatment by the medical community.  Today, these conditions or behaviors are not.

The conditions of schizophrenia and clinical depression (Goode, 2011) are two specific pheonomenon that have statistics and are world-wide examples of deviance from the norms of various societies.

Goode, E. (2011). Deviant behavior. (9th ed., p. 277 & 276). New Jersey : Pearson Education, Inc.