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Scorekeeping versus storytelling: Representational practices in the construction of “hate crime”

Studies in Symbolic Interaction

ISBN: 978-1-84663-930-2, eISBN: 978-1-84663-931-9

ISSN: 0163-2396

Publication date: 25 July 2008


The paper addresses the issue of contrasting constructions of social problems. Using “hate crime” as an example, we focus on portraits of the problem in the Federal Bureau of Investigation's (FBI) Uniform Crime Reports and in the New York Times. The analysis illumines how fundamental contrasts in representations of hate arise from differences in the underlying, and institutionalized, sense-making practices of scorekeeping and storytelling. We conclude by discussing the larger implications of the findings for further development of the theoretical model of “dialogical constructionism.”


Nichols, L.T., Nolan, J.J. and Colyer, C.J. (2008), "Scorekeeping versus storytelling: Representational practices in the construction of “hate crime”", Denzin, N.K. (Ed.) Studies in Symbolic Interaction (Studies in Symbolic Interaction, Vol. 30), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 361-379.



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