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What Are Some Examples Of Deviance?

Any behavior that violates a social norm is an example of deviance. Formal deviance refers to actions that violate enforced laws, like murder, theft, and shoplifting. Informal deviance refers to actions that violate social norms, such as talking to oneself in public or wearing informal clothes in professional settings.

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Social deviance can take many forms. In general, deviance refers to any action that violates social norms or rules. For example, the word deviance can be used to label crimes such as murder or robbery because those are actions that break the law. Smaller crimes such as shoplifting and speeding...

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Social deviance can take many forms. In general, deviance refers to any action that violates social norms or rules. For example, the word deviance can be used to label crimes such as murder or robbery because those are actions that break the law. Smaller crimes such as shoplifting and speeding tickets are also examples of deviance. All forms of deviance that break enforced laws are examples of what social scientists call formal deviance.

There is another category of deviant acts that social scientists call informal deviance. Actions in this category do not violate official laws but instead violate universally accepted social norms. Consider actions that may make you take a second look at someone because his behavior stands out. For example, think about how most people tend to wear business casual clothes to professional business meetings. Wearing a very different type of clothing to a professional meeting, like something you would wear to a nightclub, would be an act of deviance. It is not against the law to do this, but it will make you stand out as violating normal behavior. Other examples of informal social deviance include kneeling during the national anthem, picking one’s teeth in front of others, and talking to oneself in public.

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