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Many theories have been developed which address the issue of whether people are born criminals in terms of their physical genetic or psychological profile Or whether as sociologists would argue criminals are made by the environment and circumstances which they encounter during their life There have been theories put forward to suggest that a persons physical characteristics can determine how heshe behaves The earliest theories were in the eighteenth century Lavater study on physiognomy this suggests that you can tell persons character by their facial characteristics Some of these finding still exist in modern day prejudices old wives tales ie hes got shifty eyes Or his eyes are too close together Later the study of phrenology also looked at the development of peoples heads Gall did an extensive study of the brain and how the brain worked He developed the theory that the lumps on the skull were where in some people certain areas of the brain were disproportionate and this caused the lumps His study identified 26 functions of the brain and those relevant to criminology were destructiveness secretiveness acquisitiveness and combativeness Lombroso an Italian doctor while examining the skull of a criminal had the thought that the nature of criminology lay in atavism an evolutionary throwback He felt the physical characteristics such as enormous jaw high cheekbones and protruding ears supported his theory as these characteristics were found in criminals savages and apes Lombroso later developed this theory further and produced a list of physical characteristics found in criminals The list included physical features such as asymmetry of the face irregularity in the eyes ears Nose lips teeth or chin supernumary nipples fingers and toes and excessive arm length Lombroso then tested his theory on a number of convicted criminals and found that 21 had one anomaly and 43 had five or more this he suggested showed that criminals were born criminals He did other test with soldiers and criminals and
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