Essay 381 – Some think that criminal behaviour has genetic causes

GT Writing Task 2 / Essay Sample # 381

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Write about the following topic:

Some people think that criminal behaviour has genetic causes. Others believe that it is circumstances that lead people to commit a crime.

Discuss both views and give your opinion.

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.

Model Answer:

The origins of criminal behaviour have long been a topic of debate, with some attributing it to genetic factors while others assert that it is primarily influenced by environmental circumstances. This essay aims to explore both viewpoints. In my personal perspective, both factors exert an influence on individuals to engage in criminal activities.

Advocates of the genetic causes of criminal behaviour argue that certain individuals may possess inherent predispositions towards criminal tendencies. They suggest that genetic factors, such as inherited traits and abnormalities, can influence personality traits and increase the likelihood of engaging in criminal acts. For example, studies have identified specific genes associated with impulsivity and aggression, which are traits often observed in individuals with criminal records.

Conversely, proponents of the environmental perspective contend that circumstances and social factors play a pivotal role in shaping criminal behaviour. They emphasize the impact of upbringing, socioeconomic status, peer influences, and exposure to crime-prone environments as significant contributors. For instance, individuals growing up in disadvantaged neighbourhoods with limited access to education, employment opportunities, and support systems are more likely to engage in criminal activities.

In considering both viewpoints, it is essential to recognize that criminal behaviour is a complex interplay of multiple factors. While genetic predispositions may confer certain vulnerabilities, it is the combination of genetics and environmental influences that ultimately determines one’s propensity for criminality.

In conclusion, the question of whether criminal behaviour has genetic causes or is predominantly influenced by circumstances elicits diverse opinions. By recognizing the significance of both perspectives, society can adopt a multidimensional approach that focuses on preventive measures, intervention programmes, and providing individuals with opportunities for positive growth and development.

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