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Crime in the streets

Chapter


Abstract


  • The way people think about crime, and in particular the things

    that people fear about crime, are powerfully influenced by the experiences, imagery and meanings associated with crime on the streets. Crime takes place in every conceivable location, but it is street crime that seems to resonate most directly with our concerns about when and how we may

    become victims of crime. Street crime is no more serious than crime in

    other places, but it is commonplace and visible. Street crime is the public

    face of crime. It provides a window onto the way our society functions, generates images of deviance that help us define ourselves, and serves as a

    receptacle for many of our fears about modern life. By examining street

    crime we can better understand how we think about crime, and how social

    and institutional responses to crime are shaped by those constructions and

    concerns.

    In this chapter, we examine the extent and nature of street crime as well as

    how people feel about street crime. We consider how the concept of street

    crime goes beyond the literal description of crime that occurs in public

    places and becomes a metaphor for crime as the consequence of social

    disorder. We examine the competing interests that come into play in the

    regulation and policing of public space, and the challenges for public safety

    and the management of public behaviour that arise. A key point is that

    peoples' perceptions and beliefs about street crime differ great1y from what

    is known from police statistics and victim survey data on the characteristics

    and patterns of street crime. We suggest that in order to be effective, policing and other regulatory activities directed at street crime need to give

    greater attention to the range of people who see the streets as more than

    just utilitarian spaces but engage with the stree tin diverse ways as social, recreational and commercial spaces.

Publication Date


  • 2017

Citation


  • Ross, S. & Hanley, N. (2017). Crime in the streets. In D. Palmer, W. de Lint & D. Dalton (Eds.), Crime and Justice: A Guide to Criminology (pp. 129-150). Pyrmont, Australia: Thomson Reuters.

Book Title


  • Crime and Justice: A Guide to Criminology

Start Page


  • 129

End Page


  • 150

Abstract


  • The way people think about crime, and in particular the things

    that people fear about crime, are powerfully influenced by the experiences, imagery and meanings associated with crime on the streets. Crime takes place in every conceivable location, but it is street crime that seems to resonate most directly with our concerns about when and how we may

    become victims of crime. Street crime is no more serious than crime in

    other places, but it is commonplace and visible. Street crime is the public

    face of crime. It provides a window onto the way our society functions, generates images of deviance that help us define ourselves, and serves as a

    receptacle for many of our fears about modern life. By examining street

    crime we can better understand how we think about crime, and how social

    and institutional responses to crime are shaped by those constructions and

    concerns.

    In this chapter, we examine the extent and nature of street crime as well as

    how people feel about street crime. We consider how the concept of street

    crime goes beyond the literal description of crime that occurs in public

    places and becomes a metaphor for crime as the consequence of social

    disorder. We examine the competing interests that come into play in the

    regulation and policing of public space, and the challenges for public safety

    and the management of public behaviour that arise. A key point is that

    peoples' perceptions and beliefs about street crime differ great1y from what

    is known from police statistics and victim survey data on the characteristics

    and patterns of street crime. We suggest that in order to be effective, policing and other regulatory activities directed at street crime need to give

    greater attention to the range of people who see the streets as more than

    just utilitarian spaces but engage with the stree tin diverse ways as social, recreational and commercial spaces.

Publication Date


  • 2017

Citation


  • Ross, S. & Hanley, N. (2017). Crime in the streets. In D. Palmer, W. de Lint & D. Dalton (Eds.), Crime and Justice: A Guide to Criminology (pp. 129-150). Pyrmont, Australia: Thomson Reuters.

Book Title


  • Crime and Justice: A Guide to Criminology

Start Page


  • 129

End Page


  • 150