This book offers an original and exciting analysis of the concept of the criminal underworld. Print culture, policing and law enforcement, criminal networks, space and territory are explored here through a series of case studies taken from the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Adopting a microhistory approach, Fair and Unfair Trials in the British Isles, 1800-1940 provides an in-depth examination of the evolution of the modern justice system. Drawing upon criminal cases and trials from England, Scotland, and Ireland, the book examines the errors, procedural systems, and the ways in which adverse influences of social and cultural forces impacted upon individual instances of justice. The book investigates several case studies of both justice and injustice which prompted the development of forensic toxicology, the implementation of state propaganda and an increased interest in press sensationalism. One such case study considers the trial of William Sheen, who was prosecuted and later acquitted of the murder of his infant child at the Old Baily in 1827, an extraordinary miscarriage of justice that prompted outrage amongst the general public. Other case studies include trials for treason, theft, obscenity and blasphemy. Nash and Kilday root each of these cases within their relevant historical, cultural, and political contexts, highlighting changing attitudes to popular culture, public criticism, protest and activism as significant factors in the transformation of the criminal trial and the British judicial system as a whole. Drawing upon a wealth of primary sources, including legal records, newspaper articles and photographs, this book provides a unique insight into the evolution of modern criminal justice in Britain.
The historical study of crime has expanded in criminology during the past few decades, forming an active niche area in social history. Indeed, the history of crime is more relevant than ever as scholars seek to address contemporary issues in criminology and criminal justice. Thus, The Oxford Handbook of the History of Crime and Criminal Justice provides a systematic and comprehensive examination of recent developments across both fields. Chapters examine existing research, explain on-going debates and controversies, and point to new areas of interest, covering topics such as criminal law and courts, police and policing, and the rise of criminology as a field. This Handbook also analyzes some of the most pressing criminological issues of our time, including drug trafficking, terrorism, and the intersections of gender, race, and class in the context of crime and punishment. The definitive volume on the history of crime, The Oxford Handbook of the History of Crime and Criminal Justice is an invaluable resource for students and scholars of criminology, criminal justice, and legal history.
The history of modern crime control is usually presented as a narrative of how the state wrested control over the governance of crime from the civilian public. Most accounts trace the decline of a participatory, discretionary culture of crime control in the early modern era, and its replacement by a centralized, bureaucratic system of responding to offending. The formation of the 'new' professional police forces in the nineteenth century is central to this narrative: henceforth, it is claimed, the priorities of criminal justice were to be set by the state, as ordinary people lost what authority they had once exercised over dealing with offenders. This book challenges this established view, and presents a fundamental reinterpretation of changes to crime control in the age of the new police. It breaks new ground by providing a highly detailed, empirical analysis of everyday crime control in Victorian provincial cities - revealing the tremendous activity which ordinary people displayed in responding to crime - alongside a rich survey of police organization and policing in practice. With unique conceptual clarity, it seeks to reorient modern criminal justice history away from its established preoccupation with state systems of policing and punishment, and move towards a more nuanced analysis of the governance of crime. More widely, the book provides a unique and valuable vantage point from which to rethink the role of civil society and the state in modern governance, the nature of agency and authority in Victorian England, and the historical antecedents of pluralized modes of crime control which characterize contemporary society.
This volume uses four case studies, all with strong London connections, to analyze homicide law and the pardoning process in eighteenth-century England. Each reveals evidence of how attempts were made to negotiate a path through the justice system to avoid conviction, and so avoid a sentence of hanging. This approach allows a deep examination of the workings of the justice system using social and cultural history methodologies. The cases explore wider areas of social and cultural history in the period, such as the role of policing agents, attitudes towards sexuality and prostitution, press reporting, and popular conceptions of "honorable" behavior. They also allow an engagement with what has been identified as the gradual erosion of individual agency within the law, and the concomitant rise of the state. Investigating the nature of the pardoning process shows how important it was to have "friends in high places," and also uncovers ways in which the legal system was susceptible to accusations of corruption. Readers will find an illuminating view of eighteenth-century London through a legal lens.
Policing Suspicion is an innovative examination of policing practices and the impact of these on patterns of arrest and prosecution in London, 1780-1850. The work establishes and defines the idea of 'proactive policing' in historical context: where police officers exercised discretion to arrest defendants on suspicion that they had recently committed, or were about to commit, an offence. Through detailed examination of primary sources, including the Old Bailey Proceedings, newspaper reports, instructions for police officers, archival records of policing practices and Select Committee reports, the book examines the reasons given for arrests, and the characteristics of those arrested. Suggesting that individual police officers made active choices using their discretion, the book highlights how policing practices affected the received record of criminal activity. It also explores continuities and changes in policing practices before and after the establishment of the Metropolitan Police force in 1829, examining the expectations placed on the various officials responsible for law enforcement. The book contends that policing practices, and proactive officers themselves, contributed to the prevalence of criminal stereotypes. Beyond the historical, the book is situated within criminological frameworks around policing and preventive justice, noting parallels between historical policing based on suspicion and contemporary police powers such as stop and search. Speaking to issues of wider significance for criminologists by examining interactions between the police and suspects, and reflecting on police decision making processes, the book offers an original approach to those researching both the history of crime and policing, and criminology and criminal justice more broadly.
Burglary and the Making of Modern Urban Life in London, 1860-1968
Author: Eloise Moss
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Night Raiders is the first history of burglary in modern Britain. Until 1968, burglary was defined in law as occurring only between the 'night-time' hours of nine pm and six am in residential buildings. Time and space gave burglary a unique cloak of terror, since burglars' victims were likely to be in the bedroom, asleep and unawares, when the intruder crept in, prowling near them in the darkness. Yet fear sometimes gave way to sexual fantasy; eroticized visions of handsome young thieves sneaking around the boudoirs of beautiful, lonely heiresses emerged alongside tales of violence and loss in popular culture, confounding social commentators by casting the burglar as criminal hero. Night Raiders charts how burglary lay historically at the heart of national debates over the meanings of 'home', experiences of urban life, and social inequality. The book explores intimate stories of the devastation caused by burglars' presence in the most private domains, showing how they are deeply embedded within broader histories of capitalism and liberal democracy. The fear and fascination surrounding burglary were mobilized by media, state, and market to sell insurance and security technologies, whilst also popularising the crime in fiction, theatre, and film. Cat burglars' rooftop adventures transformed ideas about the architecture and policing of the city, and post-war 'spy-burglars' theft of information illuminated Cold War skirmishes across the capital. More than any other crime, burglary shaped the everyday rhythms, purchases, and perceptions of modern urban life.
Writing the History of Crime investigates the development of historical writing on the subject of crime and its wider place in social and cultural history. It examines long-standing and emerging traditions in history writing, with separate chapters on legal and scientific approaches, as well as on urban, Marxist, gender and empire history. Each chapter then explores these historical approaches in relation to crime, paying particular attention to the relationship between theory and the interpretation of evidence. Rather than a timeline for the historical appearance of ideas about crime or a catalogue of the range of topics that comprise the subject matter, Writing the History of Crime reveals the ideas behind crime as a subject of historical investigation; it looks at how these ideas generate questions that may be asked about the past and the way in which these questions are answered. This is a crucial analysis for anyone interested in the history of crime, the historiography of social history or the art of history writing more broadly.
Offering a succinct approach to the vocabulary and terminology of historical and contemporary approaches to crime and punishment, it includes concise but robust definitions of key terms and concepts from expert contributors in a user-friendly A-Z format with clear direction to related entries and further reading.
This book compares and contrasts traditional crime scenes with scenes of climate crisis to offer a more expansive definition of crime which includes environmental harm. The authors reconsider what crime scenes have always included and might come to include in the age of the Anthropocene – a new geological era where humans have made enough significant alterations to the global environment to warrant a fundamental rethinking of human-nonhuman relations. In each of the chapters, the authors reframe enduringly popular Arctic scenes, such as iceberg hunting, cruising and polar bear watching, as specific criminal anthroposcenes. By reading climate scenes in this way, the authors aim to productively deploy the representation of crime to make these scenes more engaging to policymakers and ordinary viewers. Criminal Anthroposcenes brings together insights from criminology, climate change communication, and tourism studies in order to study the production and consumption of media representations of Arctic climate change in the hope of to mobilizing more urgent public and policy responses to climate change.
This four volume collection looks at the essential issues concerning crime and punishment in the long nineteenth-century. Through the presentation of primary source documents, it explores the development of a modern pattern of crime and a modern system of penal policy and practice, illustrating the shift from eighteenth century patterns of crime (including the clash between rural custom and law) and punishment (unsystematic, selective, public, and body-centred) to nineteenth century patterns of crime (urban, increasing, and a metaphor for social instability and moral decay, before a remarkable late-century crime decline) and punishment (reform-minded, soul-centred, penetrative, uniform and private in application). The first two volumes focus on crime itself and illustrate the role of the criminal courts, the rise and fall of crime, the causes of crime as understood by contemporary investigators, the police ways of ‘knowing the criminal,’ the role of ‘moral panics,’ and the definition of the ‘criminal classes’ and ‘habitual offenders’. The final two volumes explore means of punishment and look at the shift from public and bodily punishments to transportation, the rise of the penitentiary, the convict prison system, and the late-century decline in the prison population and loss of faith in the prison.
How Dogs and Humans Made Modern New York, London, and Paris
Author: Chris Pearson
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Category: City and town life
"In exploring the long history of dogs in cities, Chris Pearson shows that the canine's inherently violent, filthy, and offputting aspects have significantly shaped contemporary western urban environments, as people sought to contain strays, rabies, and waste. And yet, the special bond between humans and dogs has also been a constitutive force. Investigating this history in Paris, London, and New York, Pearson details the complex interrelations among emotions, sentiment, and the ways we manifest our feelings through physical forms and social structures. The story of humans and dogs can illuminate the story of the rise and shape of urban modernity itself"--
Geoffrey Pearson, who died in 2013, was one of the outstanding social scientists of the post second world war era. His work spanned social work, social theory, social history, criminology and sociology. In particular, his work has had a huge impact upon studies of youth, youth culture and drugs. This collection is made up of contributions from scholars producing empirical work on some of the key areas upon which Geoff Pearson established his reputation. All of the writers in this collection have been profoundly influenced by his scholarship. This collection focuses on urban ethnography, race and ethnicity, youth, and drugs. It includes chapters on: women working in male boxing gyms; understanding the English Defence League; Black male adults as an ignored societal group; drug markets and ethnography; and sex, drugs and kids in care. The result is a cutting edge collection that takes readers into social worlds that are difficult to access, complex, yet utterly normal. Overall this is an exciting and fittingly challenging tribute to one of the UKs most important scholars. This volume will appeal to scholars and students of criminology, sociology, social history and research methodology – in particular ethnography.
Crime, Policing and Punishment in England, 1660-1914 offers an overview of the changing nature of crime and its punishment from the Restoration to World War 1. It charts how prosecution and punishment have changed from the early modern to the modern period and reflects on how the changing nature of English society has affected these processes. By combining extensive primary material alongside a thorough analysis of historiography this text offers an invaluable resource to students and academics alike. The book is arranged in two sections: the first looks at the evolution and development of the criminal justice system and the emergence of the legal profession, and examines the media's relationship with crime. Section two examines key themes in the history of crime, covering the emergence of professional policing, the move from physical punishment to incarceration and the importance of gender and youth. Finally, the book draws together these themes and considers how the Criminal Justice System has developed to suit the changing nature of the British state.
A comprehensive one-stop reference text, The Routledge Companion to Criminological Theory and Concepts (the ‘Companion’) will find a place on every bookshelf, whether it be that of a budding scholar or a seasoned academic. Comprising over a hundred concise and authoritative essays written by leading scholars in the field, this volume explains in a clear and inviting way the emergence, context, evolution and current status of key criminological theories and conceptual themes. The Companion is divided into six historical and thematic parts, each introduced by the editors and containing a selection of accessible and engaging short essays written specifically for this text: Foundations of criminological thought and contemporary revitalizations The emergence and growth of American criminology From appreciation to critique Late critical criminologies and new directions Punishment and security Geographies of crime Comprehensive cross-referencing between entries will provide the reader with signposts to later developments, to critiques and to associated theoretical developments explored within the book, and lists of further reading in every entry will encourage independent thinking and study. This book is an essential reference work for criminology students at all levels and is the perfect companion for courses on criminological theory.
The Incredible True Story of Netley Lucas, Gentleman Crook
Author: Matt Houlbrook
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Meet Netley Lucas, Prince of Tricksters—royal biographer, best-selling crime writer, and gentleman crook. In the years after the Great War, Lucas becomes infamous for climbing the British social ladder by his expert trickery—his changing names and telling of tales. An impudent young playboy and a confessed confidence trickster, he finances his far-flung hedonism through fraud and false pretenses. After repeated spells in prison, Lucas transforms himself into a confessing “ex-crook,” turning his inside knowledge of the underworld into a lucrative career as freelance journalist and crime expert. But then he’s found out again—exposed and disgraced for faking an exclusive about a murder case. So he reinvents himself, taking a new name and embarking on a prolific, if short-lived, career as a royal biographer and publisher. Chased around the world by detectives and journalists after yet another sensational scandal, the gentleman crook dies as spectacularly as he lived—a washed-up alcoholic, asphyxiated in a fire of his own making. The lives of Netley Lucas are as flamboyant as they are unlikely. In Prince of Tricksters, Matt Houlbrook picks up the threads of Lucas’s colorful lies and lives. Interweaving crime writing and court records, letters and life-writing, Houlbrook tells Lucas’s fascinating story and, in the process, provides a panoramic view of the 1920s and ’30s. In the restless times after the Great War, the gentlemanly trickster was an exemplary figure, whose tall tales and bogus biographies exposed the everyday difficulties of knowing who and what to trust. Tracing how Lucas both evoked and unsettled the world through which he moved, Houlbrook shows how he prompted a pervasive crisis of confidence that encompassed British society, culture, and politics. Taking readers on a romp through Britain, North America, and eventually into Africa, Houlbrook confronts readers with the limits of our knowledge of the past and challenges us to think anew about what history is and how it might be made differently.
THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER The Peaky Blinders as we know them, thanks to the hit TV series, are infused with drama and dread. Fashionably dressed, the charismatic but deeply flawed Shelby family blind enemies by slashing them with the disposable safety razor blades stitched in to the peaks of their flat caps, as they fight bloody gangland wars involving Irish terrorists and the authorities led by a devious Home Secretary, Winston Churchill. But who were the real Peaky Blinders? Did they really exist? Well-known social historian, broadcaster and author, Carl Chinn, has spent decades searching them out. Now he reveals the true story of the notorious Peaky Blinders, one of whom was his own great grandfather and, like the Shelbys, his grandfather was an illegal bookmaker in back-street Birmingham. In this gripping social history, Chinn shines a light on the rarely reported struggles of the working class in one of the great cities of the British Empire before the First World War. The story continues after 1918 as some Peaky Blinders transformed into the infamous Birmingham Gang. Led by the real Billy Kimber, they fought a bloody war with the London gangsters Darby Sabini and Alfie Solomon over valuable protection rackets extorting money from bookmakers across the booming postwar racecourses of Britain. Drawing together a remarkably wide-range of original sources, including rarely seen images of real Peaky Blinders and interviews with relatives of the 1920s gangsters, Peaky Blinders: The Real Story adds a new dimension to the true history of Birmingham's underworld and fact behind its fiction.
This book covers organized crime groups, empirical studies of organized crime, criminal finances and money laundering, and crime prevention, gathering some of the most authoritative and well-known scholars in the field. The contributions to this book are new chapters written in honor of Professor Dick Hobbs, on the occasion of his retirement. They reflect his powerful influence on the study of organized crime, offering a novel perspective that located organized crime in its socio-economic context, studied through prolonged ethnographic engagement. Professor Hobbs has influenced a generation of criminology researchers engaged in studying organized crime groups, and this work provides a both a look back and this influence and directions for future research. It will be of interest to researchers in criminology and criminal justice, particularly with a focus on organized crime and financial crime, as well as those interested in corruption, crime prevention, and applications of ethnographic methods.