Primary deviance

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Primary deviance is the first stage in a theory of deviant identity formation. Lemert (1967)[1] conceptualized primary deviance as engaging in the initial act of deviance. This is very common throughout society, as everyone takes part in basic form violation.[2] Primary deviance does not result in a person internalizing a deviant identity, so one does not alter their self-concept to include this deviant identity. It is not until the act becomes labeled or tagged, that secondary deviation may materialize.

See also[edit]

Primary label


  1. ^ Lemert, Edwin. 1967. Human Deviance, Social Problems and Social Control. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall
  2. ^ O'Grady, William. 2011. Crime in Canadian Context. Ontario: Oxford University Press