In this chapter, we detail the historical and contemporary theoretical development of anomie and strain theories. An increase in strain can lead to an increase in crime. Social strain theory was developed by famed American sociologist Robert K. Merton. According to the theory, some crime may be linked to the presence of anger and frustration that is created by societal or personal strain. Strain theory is a sociological theory that tries to explain why people may be drawn to delinquency or crime. The premise of strain theory is that a something or someone in a person’s life is causing the strain that leads them to commit a crime in order to alleviate that strain (Agnew, 2001). It focuses on the positions that individuals occupy in a social system, not on the characteristics of the individual. In criminology, the strain theory describes social structures inside society that may support people to carry out crime. One such strain is real or perceived injustice. Strain Theory attempts to explain why crime is resolute amongst the lower classes who are subjected to the least opportunities for economic achievement (O’ Connor 2007). Thus, the strain theory (GST) should be regarded primarily as a set of ideas formulated to explain the occurrence of crime because of the stress in life we must face. Strain theories look through a structural scope to examine crime in society. Agnew’s general strain theory is based on the general idea that “when people are treated badly they may get upset and engage in crime”. The strain can be individual or structural. Despite the plethora of international research supporting anomie and strain theories, comparatively few studies have examined the impact of anomie and strain on crime and delinquency within an Australian or New Zealand context. General strain theory as an explanation of crime and misuse the word theory is defined as a set of ideas formulated to explain something (Hawkins, 1988, pp 167-234). In contrast to control and learning theories, GST focuses explicitly on negative treatment by others and is the only major theory of crime and delinquency to highlight the role of negative emotions in the etiology of offending. "What Are the Strengths and Weaknesses of Merton's Strain Theory in Understanding Crime" paper focuses on the social strain theory. While Sutherland's primary focus was on the crimes of the socially elite and powerful, Merton and other classical strain theorists (Cloward and Ohlin, 1960, Cohen, 1955) … Introduction. … When Merton (1938) and Sutherland (1940) first presented their respective strain theory and notion of white-collar crime, their concerns and fundamental assumptions were completely at odds with one another. The theory states that social structures may pressure citizens to commit crimes. The general strain theory identifies the ways of measuring strain, the different types of strain, the link between strain and crime, and policy recommendations based on the theory. Strain may be structural, which refers to the processes at the societal level that filter … The theory explains that it is the social structures that influence a person to commit a crime. Following the work of Emile Durkheim, Strain Theories have been supported by Robert King Merton, Albert K. Cohen, Richard Cloward and Lloyd Ohlin, Robert Agnew, and Steven Messner and Richard Rosenfeld. I’m from a town of 3,000 people in rural Iowa. 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