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Robert M. Worley and Vidisha Barua Worley

In: 21st Century Anthropology: A Reference Handbook

Chapter 82: Deviant Behavior

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Deviant Behavior
Deviant behavior

Many anthropologists have studied deviant behavior throughout the course of their careers, yet deviant behavior has always been somewhat difficult to define since it can vary from situation to situation and across cultures. It would not be necessarily deviant, for example, to cry at a funeral. In fact, it might even be expected to some degree. On the other hand, if a student was to begin crying hysterically during one of his classes, this could certainly be seen as deviant.

While the term deviance often has negative connotations, it is important to remember that deviant behavior can also include attributes or characteristics that are highly valued (Heckert & Heckert, 2002). For example, in the once popular television show Doogie Howser, the title character ...

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