Deviation—Norm Vs Abnormal

June 30, 2015

Deviance is defined as any behavior that violates social norms, and is usually of sufficient severity to warrant disapproval from the majority of society. Deviance can be criminal or non‐criminal. To deviate means to stray from an accepted path. An accepted path is in most cases is a conventional approach and thinking and way of life which most accept as legitimate which can be true or false, but could verified and checked thru the process of time and maturity and understanding of society. In such aspect of human life, most people are deviant from the accepted norm, what could vary is the extent and degree of such deviation. When such deviance is in considerable and in significant amount, it becomes noticeable and thus people are labeled as deviant since they are seen and publicly out.

Most sociologists understand and define that deviation is of three kinds. The first one is the positive deviation in which a person could deviate from the practice of the norm, and such deviation could result in exclusion from the social norm and stigmatization of person from social activities and norm in such deviation, the person is victim since one thinks and believe in different way and manner than what most people do. Hence, such person could suffer as result of the conviction and faith one show in carrying out one’s daily activities and routines.

In the second type of deviation, it is negative deviation in which such given act and thinking is not acceptable by whichever standard people measure such as killing, poisoning or murdering people lives. Such deviation is not only crime but also disease such people suffer as result of their given bad act in which they deviate from the good. In such practice, people deviate from the norm as result of bad choice they make in life since it is not healthy thinking and practice.

The third type of deviance is neither positive nor negative in which such people have a deviated act and thinking which does not put any given harm to any other people although they have deviated from society’s norm and expectations. A good example of such deviance could be a person could have big household items in small rooms, a person can have more than 20 pets in home, and the like, which does not have a such impact but such given act and thinking is not considered as normal act and thinking since the norm practice in different way.

Deviance is relative and contextual. When a person deviates from one given and form of life, one could be considered as mad or abnormal, but such given deviation could result in joining another circle and way of life in which such category of people and way of life, this given person could be considered as chosen one and normal. Such given contextual and relative way of interpreting peoples way of life and understanding is result of most people’s understanding and interpretations than what the objective reality speaks since this world is result of deviated people thinking and practice. An act and thinking that is considered and understood as deviant in one society can be seen as perfect and complete in another society and perspective.

One of the contributing factors in determining whether an act is considered is culture, but cultures change over time and vary from society to society. For instance sometimes ago in Western society and eve in developing nations, smoking and drinking alcohol is considered as deviant, but in today it is of course no longer. Culture is totality of thinking and values set by any given society in which such values and thinking could change as society changes and change is one of the inherent characteristics of this world. Hence any given act and thinking of deviance at one given point of time is considered as norm in another time. This is one of the trends in this world.

For example, Jesus Christ, Prophet Muhammad and Buddha are result of such deviance and if they did not deviate from the thinking, belief and practice of the society which they respectively belong, they would not bring about such profound and tremendous change in this world. Other great peoples of this world are also people of deviances in which they have seen certain light on the things or thinking which they come about and as result of such deviation, they become successful in doing whatever things they need to do in life and they achieve their purpose and existence of life on earth in decent manner.

Scientists and inventors who come up with inventions and findings were cursed and considered as negative deviance since they have come up with understanding and thinking the rest of them did not understand and they were excluded from the scientific community which they belong. They were out casted since what they think and they have come about could not fit to the understanding and thinking of the scientific norm and society.  As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, to be great is to be misunderstood.

Although such given deviation is considered as negative deviation in the beginning, as it passes all kinds of hurdles and challenges and as they pass each and every test they are given by which could include electric and other kinds of strange shocks by the society which they respectively belong, they happen to be considered as positive deviations since they reach at a point of no return and impossible to label and categorize such peoples thinking and belief as negative as reality and time tells that as those strong forces of oppositions and conspiracies and sabotages could not resist them. This is another characteristic of this world, which is correct and true.

Why are such people understood as negative but later as positive deviance is due to the impact they have come about. Their thinking and understanding do have an influence on the existing institutions and leaders and thinking since they shake the foundations and fundamentals of existing institutions which they affect and touch. In such scenario of life, and in every society and age, these three aspects of deviations do exist in which one is considered as negative at one time could be considered as positive in later time and those who are considered as negative are still negative one which depend upon circumstances and conditions of thinking and act and their practical influence and impact on society.


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