Toward A Taxonomy Of Control


R Ellickson, "The System of Social Control," pp 123-36 in Order Without Law
D Black "Social Control as a Dependent Variable," pp. 1-26 (be sure to read the footnotes which contain lots of good examples)

Possible Class Activities

Pile sort type exercise with examples of social control that we want to categorize?


Fundamental observation: normative behavior varies. our job is to try to figure out what the variation tells us, and to predict it.

Two parties third party

Style: "the language and logic by which it defines and responds to deviant behavior" (6)


<tableborder="1">Style Where Found Focus Logic Range of Contexts
penal Criminal conduct deterrence (gen/sp), vengeance
therapeutic Juvenile, psychiatry, social work Person Responsibilty? Fix person. Problematic act was not done by "normal" person.
conciliatory negotiation, mediation, arbitration, marital, labor, international relationship Relational repair. Restore social harmony. Individuals might even be subordinated to the collective here.
compensatory Tort, contract consequences Liability, someone failed to take care, damages, make whole
reform Causes Change the structural conditions which give rise to the conflict in the first place?
prevention Opportunity Change situation of potential offenders or potential victims From education to public awareness to putting up a fence

Quantity of Normative Variation

Other things being equal, does the response vary from case to case? Black: normative variation <= social diversity. Point — other variables come into play to make one situation "different" from another. Social characteristics of the actors matter. Social locations matter.

Ellickson's "System of Control"

1. Three levels of behavior
a. behavior that falls short of expectations
a. behavior that meets expectations
a. behavior that exceeds expectations
1. Two ways to respond: rewards, punishments. Both require effort. Observation: most rules/norms/expectations are set up so that the largest category is the one that does not require a response.
1. Five Controllers
a. Self
a. Other person (second party)
a. Third party
- Organizations
- State/Government
- Society
Three levels of behavior
1. primary = ordinary human behavior
1. secondary = social control behavior in response to primary behavior
1. tertiary = social control of social control
Five Types of Rules
1. Substantive Rules
What primary conduct is punished or left alone.
1. Remedial Rules
Rules about what kind of sanction is appropriate in given situation
1. Procedural Rules
Rules about how to obtain and weigh evidence. Compare our exam question about systems of knowledge and the changes in rules that brought an end to the witch hysteria.
1. Constitutive Rules
Rules that describe how the control system should be structured. Easy in the case of law – how is the legal system set up. In informal realm, rules that say folks who are more involved should be turned to. In organizations, rules of quorum, etc. including membership criteria. Notice relevance here to Massachusetts Bay.
1. Controller Selecting Rules
Rules about division of social control labor. Like "choice of law and jurisdictional laws" but prior to them.


What is self help?
What's the difference between unilateral and bilateral social control?