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Textbook on Criminology

Textbook on Criminology (7th edn)

Katherine S. Williams
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date: 27 September 2023

14. Labelling, phenomenology and ethnomethodologylocked

14. Labelling, phenomenology and ethnomethodologylocked

  • Katherine S. WilliamsKatherine S. WilliamsLecturer in Law, University of Wales, Aberystwyth


Course-focused and comprehensive, the Textbook on series provides an accessible overview of the key areas on the law curriculum. The new criminologies emerged some 50 years ago, largely as a reaction against the positivism that had arisen in and taken over criminology. The ideas upon which this school is based are drawn from the works of Plato and Aristotle, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Alfred Schultz, Karl Marx, and the Chicago School. While new criminologies largely agree on the basis for rejecting positivism, they differ over what should replace it. This chapter examines five theories of new criminologies: (i) labelling or interactionism; (ii) phenomenology and ethnomethodology; (iii) conflict; (iv) radical criminologies; and (v) cultural criminology.

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