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The Origins of Criminology: A Reader is a collection of nineteenth-century texts from the key originators of the practice of criminology – selected, introduced, and with commentaries by the leading scholar in this area, Nicole Rafter. This book presents criminology as a unique field of study that took root in a context in which urbanization, immigration, and industrialization changed the class structure of Western nations. As relatively homogenous communities became more sharply divided and aware of a bottom-most group, the 'dangerous classes', a new segment of the middle class emerged: professionals involved in the work of social control. Tracing the intellectual origins of criminology to physiognomy, phrenology, and evolutionary theories, this book demonstrates criminology's background in new attitudes toward science and the development of scientific methodologies applicable to social and mental phenomena. Through an expert selection of original texts, it traces the emergence of ‘criminology’ as a new field purporting to produce scientific knowledge about crime and criminals.
This reader provides a thorough grounding in issues related to the study of crime, the criminal justice system, and social control. The editors indicate crime's varied and conflicting history as well as its current debates. The mixture of historical and more recent readings shows a variety of perspectives.
The Nurture Versus Biosocial Debate in Criminology: On the Origins of Criminal Behavior and Criminality takes a contemporary approach to address the sociological and the biological positions of human behavior by allowing preeminent scholars in criminology to speak to the effects of each on a range of topics. Kevin M. Beaver, J.C. Barnes, and Brian B. Boutwell aim to facilitate an open and honest debate between the more traditional criminologists who focus primarily on environmental factors and contemporary biosocial criminologists who examine the interplay between biology/genetics and environmental factors.
"Sylvan's thesis furnishes far more of the same valued experiences than is usually realized: ritual activity, communal ceremony, a philosophy and worldview, a code for living one's life, a cultural identity, a social structure, a sense of belonging, and crucially, Sylvan argues encounters with the numinous." —Journal of Religion Most studies of the religious significance of popular music focus on music lyrics, offering little insight into the religious aspects of the music itself. Traces of the Spirit examines the religious dimensions of popular music subcultures, charting the influence and religious aspects of popular music in mainstream culture today and analyzing the religious significance of the audience's experiences, rituals, and worldviews. Sylvan contends that popular music subcultures serve the function of religious communities and represent a new and significant religious phenomenon. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork using interviews and participant observation, Sylvan examines such subcultures as the Deadheads, raves and their participants, metalheads, and Hip Hop culture. Based on these case studies, he offers a comprehensive theoretical framework in which to study music and popular culture. In addition, he traces the history of West African possession religion from Africa to the diaspora to its integration into American popular music in such genres as the blues, rock and roll, and contemporary musical youth subcultures.
But Creating Born Criminals is much more than a look at the past. It is an exploration of the role of biological explanation as a form of discourse and of its impact upon society. While The Bell Curve and other recent books have stopped short of making eugenic recommendations, their contentions point toward eugenic conclusions, and people familiar with the history of eugenics can hear in them its echoes. Rafter demonstrates that we need to know how eugenic reasoning worked in the past and that we must recognize the dangers posed by the dominance of a theory that interprets social problems in biological terms and difference as biological inferiority.
This book provides the best of both worlds-- authored text sections with carefully selected accompanying readings covering criminological theory from past to present and beyond. The articles, from leading journals in criminology and criminal justice, reflect both classic studies and state-of-the-art research. Key Features " Begins with an introductory chapter that presents a succinct overview of criminological theory, and briefly describes the organization and content of the book " Features 'How to Read a Research Article'--a perfect introduction to understanding how real-world research is organized and delivered in the journal literature " Includes a 'mini-chapter' for each Section, with figures and tables that present basic concepts and provide a background for the Readings that follow " Provides key terms, web resources, and thought-provoking discussion questions for each Section, along with questions for each Reading to help students develop their critical thinking skills " Instructor Resources on CD include a test bank, PowerPoint slides for each section, classroom activities, and more. " A Student study site provides additional articles, self-study quizzes, e-flashcards, and more.
From a look at classics like Psycho and Double Indemnity to recent films like Traffic and Thelma & Louise, Nicole Rafter and Michelle Brown show that criminological theory is produced not only in the academy, through scholarly research, but also in popular culture, through film. Criminology Goes to the Movies connects with ways in which students are already thinking criminologically through engagements with popular culture, encouraging them to use the everyday world as a vehicle for theorizing and understanding both crime and perceptions of criminality. The first work to bring a systematic and sophisticated criminological perspective to bear on crime films, Rafter and Brown’s book provides a fresh way of looking at cinema, using the concepts and analytical tools of criminology to uncover previously unnoticed meanings in film, ultimately making the study of criminological theory more engaging and effective for students while simultaneously demonstrating how theories of crime circulate in our mass-mediated worlds. The result is an illuminating new way of seeing movies and a delightful way of learning about criminology. Instructor's Guide
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