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Referral - Fragmented Mechanisms or Integrated Model? (From Controle Social de la deviance, P 249-277, 1979 - See NCJ-72423)

NCJ Number
M Turmaine; R Zauberman
Date Published
29 pages
This theoretical discussion examines the referral system to penal or psychiatric confinement as a formalized version of the exclusion practiced informally at other levels of social control.
According to the view presented, social control of individuals in society is exercised in various sectors, such as the family and the profession, each of which requires a certain type of conformity for inclusion in that order. If social relations with the deviant become too difficult to permit social regulation in that sphere, the deviant individual is excluded in the direction of another sector; i.e., he is referred. Society thus becomes a series of inclusions and exclusions. From the standpoint of control of the individual, the final stage of exclusion is penal or psychiatric confinement. Discussions of this referral system tend to oscillate between a universal model of integration explaining the phenomenon of referral and a model focusing on all the component parts and revealing their contradictions. In any case, the course of referrals does not proceed in a linear fashion through the sectors of order. A number of factors determine the referral mechanisms at a given level. Such determinants include marketing practices of particular approaches; and the advantage of certain referring parties such as officials within the judicial system. Efficient referrals require anticipation of who will benefit from the referral, and research must ascertain which referral decisions are effective and how criminal careers are best controlled. In attempting to discern patterns in the complex of referrals the researcher must remember to consider time factors which render fundamental contradictions among mechanisms comprehensible. A 3-6 item bibliography is supplied.


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