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This chapter highlights crime prevention. Preventive strategies represent an approach that is less concerned with dispensing justice than with minimising the risk of crime being committed in the first place. Crime prevention strategies are thus based on a combination of assumptions about human motivations and research evidence about observed patterns of offending behaviour. The chapter then looks at the political and strategic factors that may influence decisions about which crimes to try to prevent. It considers perspectives on crime prevention focusing on potential offenders (in terms of deterrence and diversionary approaches), potential victims, and the idea of community safety and well-being. Finally, the chapter addresses some of the continuing and unresolved questions about the purported achievements and effectiveness of crime prevention strategies.

Chapter

Victimology is now regarded as a central component to the study of crime and deviance. Victim-based analysis enables understanding of different aspects of criminal and deviant behaviour and is redefining focal research concerns across a range of crimes. This academic development has been matched by the recognition by the criminal justice system of the consequences of victimization and moves towards both victim services and a victim-centred justice process, and by increasing political concern with victimization. The chapter analyses victimology’s key conceptual approaches, ideas, and typologies and examines whether and how different criminological perspectives understand the victim. The chapter considers the issue of victim precipitation, in the context of offender motivation, crime events operandi, and differential risks. It concludes with a discussion of how victimology has connected across to human rights violations with restorative and transitional justice foregrounding consideration of global issues such as truth-telling, reconciliation, reparations, peace-building, and normative compliance.

Chapter

This chapter examines the cultural and subcultural theories of crime and delinquency, beginning with Albert Cohen’s 1955 analysis of ‘subculture’ in relation to delinquent behaviour by gangs and how his approach to subculture as a ‘way of life’ evolved to resolve problems facing lower-class youth in a highly competitive society. It then looks at the work of other scholars who challenged Cohen’s theory but retained much of his analytic framework, including Richard Cloward, Lloyd Ohlin, and David Matza. In particular, it discusses various theoretical perspectives linking culture and subculture to delinquency, from strain theories to Matza’s drift theory, labelling theory, and culture conflict theories. It also explores the relationship between crime and the labour market, particularly unemployment. The chapter concludes by reviewing the criticisms against subcultural theory.

Chapter

This chapter examines the phenomenological sociology of crime, deviance, and control. It first discusses the central issues relating to phenomenology, particularly with respect to knowledge, good and evil, and deviant phenomena. It then discusses some of the arguments put forward by phenomenologists, citing the link between experiences and consciousness and how phenomenology relates to social order. It also considers the work of Aaron Cicourel, Egon Bittner, David Sudnow, and others on the phenomenological sociology of crime and deviance, as well as the emergence of phenomenological criminology. The chapter concludes by reviewing some of the criticisms of phenomenological work on deviance.

Chapter

This chapter explores the contribution of symbolic interactionism to the sociology of deviance in the 1960s and early 1970s. It first traces the origins of symbolic interactionism, citing the work of the University of Chicago’s sociology department, particularly on the sociology of crime and control. It then looks at the emergence of symbolic interactionism and how it has occupied a prominent place in the field of criminology, as well as the interactionists’ tendency to practise a social anthropology of participant-observation. The strength of interactionism lies in its insistence on distinguishing between primary and secondary deviance and researching the social reaction to crime and deviance, particularly retrospective and projective labelling. The chapter concludes by reviewing the criticisms against the interactionist sociology of crime and deviance.