As you begin to think about deviant behavior from a social constructionist perspective, you may recognize yourself as “deviant” in ways that you had not considered before. Howard Becker suggests that deviance is “in the eye of the beholder.” For this discussion, I want you to imagine how you have constructed deviants in the way that you “behold” folks who are different from you.
Respond to the following question: Howard Becker states, “…social groups create deviance by making the rules whose infraction constitutes deviance, and by applying those rules to particular people and labeling them as outsiders. From this point of view, deviance is not a quality of the act the person commits, but rather a consequence of the application by others of the rules and sanctions to an ‘offender’” (40-41).
Think of a group that you belong(ed) to that has/had special rules specific to that group. Describe how those rules can be applied to non-members to differentiate them from the group and to label them as outsiders. Some examples could include clubs, gangs, sports teams (or fans), cliques, or any other group with rules that are written or understood by members.