Sudha Chavda. Hillingdon
The control of deviance
the immigrants came from remote rural areas where the progress of education
and economic development were slowest and the old traditions strongest.
They brought with them some attitudes that were common to rural communities.
They were usually pre-literate, pre-scientific and pre-industrial. They
tended to rely exclusively on oral traditions. The authority of elders
was one controlling force. The father had the authority and power over
children in their economic and intellectual dependence. Peer-group scrutiny
and criticism was another means of social control. 'Gossip' was unrelenting
Facts about people were unconsciously or maliciously
distorted. Relatives and neighbours were quick to believe the worst
and motives were always in question. It seemed there was the mentality
of mutual distrust e.g. the man, who was blessed with strong sons, or
good health provoked envy and suspicion that somehow or other he had
contrived to gain these blessings at someone else's expense. And anyone
who was failing to prosper or suffer illness or infertility attributed
these to their past deeds or witchcraft. Another characteristic noticed
in such culture was the attitude to time. Punctuality and strict obedience
to the clock were less important. They believed the changes in life
were coming from mystical forces, like fate, luck, witchcraft or simply
acts of God.