1-11 of 11 Results

  • Keyword: political economy x
Clear all

Chapter

Cover The Oxford Handbook of Criminology

8. Drug use, drug problems, drug control: A political economy perspective  

Toby Seddon and Alex Stevens

This chapter presents an overview of the phenomenon of illicit drugs and their control. We show that drugs are not just a matter of crime, morality, or health but rather are also a global commodity the use and control of which continue to run along lines shaped by inequalities of geography, wealth and power. Viewing the drug problem through the lens of political economy, and in global and historical perspective, provides a clearer view of the issue. It allows us to see how some facets of the problem are exaggerated (e.g. crime and health harms) whilst others are under-stated (e.g. pleasure, harms to producer countries in the Global South). It also sheds new light on why some policy approaches and interventions continue to fail and why others may be more promising. Lastly, the prospects for radical alternatives to prohibition through drug law reform are considered.

Chapter

Cover The Oxford Handbook of Criminology

5. Political economy, crime, and criminal justice  

Robert Reiner

Trends and patterns in crime and criminal justice are shaped by variations in the overall structure of different political economies. The macro trends in political economy are mediated by varying institutional and cultural factors and, in turn, these feed down into more local neighbourhood and family patterns and ultimately the psychology of different individuals. Whilst there is an element of choice in the commission of crime, this operates in conditions that are influenced by micro, meso, and macro structures. The chapter analyses the history of political economy as a perspective in criminological theory, as well as how crime and criminal justice vary over time and space between different political economies, in particular social democratic and neoliberal ones.

Chapter

Cover Sentencing and Punishment

3. Determining ‘just deserts’  

Seriousness and proportionality are key concepts in the ‘just deserts’ approach to sentencing which was endorsed by the Criminal Justice Act 1991. This chapter analyses the extent to which this framework based on retributivist principles has been undermined by subsequent changes in legislation. It examines law and guidance on constructing seriousness, particularly in relation to harm and culpability, and on determining a commensurate sentence. Throughout it refers to the Sentencing Code (referring to the Sentencing Act 2020 when we are explaining how changes occurred) and illustrates issues by using examples from recent guidelines, focusing discussion on custodial sentencing. Finally, it discusses criticisms of modern retributivism from a range of standpoints, including Marxian perspectives.

Chapter

Cover The Oxford Handbook of Criminology

35. The punishment-welfare relationship: history, sociology, and politics  

David Garland

The relationship between ‘punishment’ and ‘welfare’ is by now a well-established topic of theory and research in historical, sociological, and comparative studies of punishment. In recent years that relationship—and in particular the balance between penal and welfare approaches—has also become a focal point for social movements working to transform criminal justice, and more generally for activists seeking to shift power and resources away from police and prisons towards social service and public health approaches to crime control. This chapter discusses the punishment-welfare relationship as a matter of history, sociology, and comparative social policy, summarizing what we know, identifying promising lines of research, and commenting on key areas of contention. As a theoretical matter, it is argued that future research ought to view penal and welfare policies in relation to the underlying social problems these policies purportedly address and also in relation to the larger social and economic structures that shape these social problems and the policies that deal with them. By way of political commentary, some considerations are noted that should be borne in mind by activists pressing for a wholesale shift from penal to welfare modes of crime-control.

Chapter

Cover The Oxford Handbook of Criminology

7. Urban criminal collaborations  

Alistair Fraser and Dick Hobbs

This chapter examines a range of criminological classifications for urban criminal groups, covering both youthful and adult-oriented collaborations. The chapter provides a critical overview of the following categorizations: gangs; subcultures; professional crime; the underworld; and organized crime. Debates relating to each are introduced. While criminological approaches to youthful groups have a clear history, from the ‘Chicago School’ to the ‘Birmingham School’, perspectives on adult groups are less solid and more interdisciplinary. In both cases, the chapter argues that criminological classifications have struggled to capture the complexities brought on by the changing nature of the urban political economy. The chapter concludes by introducing a critical perspective that problematizes criminological categorizations of urban criminal collaborations.

Chapter

Cover The Politics of the Police

4. Learning the blues: the establishment and legitimation of professional policing in Britain 1829–2018  

Benjamin Bowling, Robert Reiner, and James Sheptycki

This chapter first looks at the history of British professional policing between 1829 and 1856, when the police idea was highly controversial. It compares the new police with the old forms, the motives for police reform, and the social impact of the new police. It also considers the basis of opposition to the police, and describes how the role of policing in social order became recognized. There follows an analysis of the legitimation of the modern British police in the face of widespread opposition. This partly relates to such operational strategies as bureaucratic discipline, subjection to the rule of law, non-partisanship, accountability, a service role, and preventive policing. These were facilitated by cultural changes, notably the incorporation of the working class, into the fabric of civil, political, and socio-economic citizenship. After the 1970s, with the emergence of neo-liberalism, these processes reversed and the police became increasingly controversial and politicized.

Chapter

Cover The Politics of the Police

7. Below, beyond, and above the police: pluralization of policing  

Benjamin Bowling, Robert Reiner, and James Sheptycki

The chapter surveys theories concerning the hybrid nature of the plural policing web. It evaluates the claim that a fundamental shift in policing occurred at the beginning of the twenty-first century. Holding police métier as a definitional constant, the chapter examines how policing is enacted from different institutional positions in plural policing. It outlines the history of claims about the rise of plural policing before discussing its relation to law, the military, technology, territory, locality, the rising importance of private ‘high policing’, and the centrality of surveillance. The chapter demonstrates the complex opportunity structure of the plural policing web, the variety of legal and technological tools involved in its operations, and suggests that it poses fundamental problems for the democratic governance of police that have not been resolved. It concludes that there is both continuity and change in the politics of the police and that claims of a fundamental break have been overstated.

Chapter

Cover The Oxford Handbook of Criminology

26. Urban criminal collaborations  

Alistair Fraser and Dick Hobbs

This chapter examines a range of criminological classifications for urban criminal groups, covering both youthful and adult-oriented collaborations. The chapter provides a critical overview of the following categorizations: gangs; subcultures; neighbourhood crime groups; professional crime; the underworld; and organized crime. Debates relating to each are introduced. While criminological approaches to youthful groups have a clear history, from the ‘Chicago School’ to the ‘Birmingham School’, perspectives on adult groups are less solid and more interdisciplinary. In both cases, the chapter argues that criminological classifications have struggled to capture the complexities brought on by the changing nature of the urban political economy. The chapter concludes by introducing a critical perspective that problematizes criminological categorizations of urban criminal collaborations.

Chapter

Cover The Oxford Handbook of Criminology

3. Punishment and welfare: social problems and social structures  

David Garland

This chapter examines the complex relationship between ‘punishment’ and ‘welfare.’ It traces the various ways in which penal systems are influenced by, and interact with, broader systems of social welfare and how these linked institutions function as modes of social control and class control. Following a critical review of the historical and comparative literature—and associated questions of data and method—it discusses how penal and welfare policies relate to the social problems they purport to address and to the political and socio-economic structures within which they operate. ‘Penal-welfarist’ and ‘welfarist’ practices are defined and differentiated, some common elements of practices of punishing and assisting are identified, and the fundamentals of ‘the welfare state’ and its recent neoliberal history are explained.

Book

Cover The Politics of the Police

Benjamin Bowling, Robert Reiner, and James W E Sheptycki

In its fifth edition, The Politics of the Police has been revised, updated, and extended to take account of recent changes in the law, policy, organization, and social contexts of policing. It builds upon the previous editions’ political economy of policing to encompass a wide global and transnational scope, and to reflect the growing diversity of policing forms. This volume explores the highly charged debates that surround policing, including the various controversies that have led to a change in the public’s opinion of the police in recent years, as well as developments in law, accountability, and governance. The volume sets out to analyse what the police do, how they do it and with what effects, how the mass media shape public perceptions of the police, and how globalization, privatization, militarization, and securitization are impacting on contemporary police work. It concludes with an assessment of what we can expect for the future of policing.

Chapter

Cover The Politics of the Police

10. Police and media  

Benjamin Bowling, Robert Reiner, and James Sheptycki

This chapter synthesizes a theoretical view of police and media which considers not only media content, but also how different kinds of media technologies function as tools in the hands of different kinds of institutional actors. It also considers police-media relations in the light of neo-liberal market conditions. Relations between police and media have traditionally been conceptualized between two poles of argument, on the one side the orthodox/hegemonic and on the other the revisionist/subversive. However, the social fragmentation of ‘postmodern conditions’ at the cusp of the millennium troubled this binary. A common question in thinking about the police and media concerned the manufacture of consent and the creation of socially integrative conditions for policing by consent of the governed. This chapter argues that social conflict and dissensus are functional symptoms of neo-liberal social order in which security has become a commodity. The social disintegration accompanying an over-mediatized society does not inhibit market relations, but it does make policing more difficult.