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Ethnicity and Crime: A Sociological Analysis

Reza Ali Mohseni

Social deviation, particularly criminal conduct, is one of the most prevalent phenomenons
within human society. There is also support to conclude that there is a correlation between
crime and ethnic group. To examine this more closely, one could say that crime is a function
of structural conditions to which ethnic groups belong. In Iran, the number and variety of
crimes have not been committed equally amongst ethnic groups. Consequently, the highest
rate of crime has been observed in Sistani groups and the least in Turkish groups. Upon
closer analysis, addiction, murder and theft constitute the most prevalent crimes within
specific ethnic groups. The number and variety of the crimes among immigrant ethnic
groups is considerably higher than in native (local) ethnic groups. In the following study, the
ethnic groups in Golestan Province (one of the northern province of Iran) have been
classified into six groups, and the types and the crime rates of these ethnic groups have been
identified. These groups have specific and different structural and cultural conditions. The
sociological analysis of crime committed by these ethnic groups crimes relate to the
structural conditions (socio–cultural) and cultural differences, more specifically to: the
migrant and native culture, poverty culture, attitudes, values, beliefs, and standard of living
in these groups. These relationships will be examined more closely below.

Keywords: Crime, Ethnic Group, Golestan Province