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Book part
Publication date: 19 July 2021

Marco Brydolf-Horwitz and Katherine Beckett

A growing body of work suggests that welfare and punishment should be understood as alternative, yet interconnected ways of governing poor and marginalized populations…

Abstract

A growing body of work suggests that welfare and punishment should be understood as alternative, yet interconnected ways of governing poor and marginalized populations. While there is considerable evidence of a punitive turn in welfare and penal institutions over the past half century, recent studies show that welfare and carceral institutions increasingly comanage millions of people caught at the intersection of the welfare and penal sectors. The growth of “mass supervision” and the expansion of the social services sector help explain the blurring of welfare and punishment in the United States in daily practice. We suggest that these developments complicate the idea of an institutional trade-off and contend that welfare and punishment are best understood along a continuum of state management in which poor and socially marginalized populations are subjected to varying degrees of support, surveillance, and sanction. In presenting the punishment–welfare continuum, we pay particular attention to the “murky middle” between the two spheres: an interinstitutional space that has emerged in the context of mass supervision and a social services–centric safety net. We show that people caught in the “murky middle” receive some social supports and services, but also face pervasive surveillance and control and must adapt to the tangle of obligations and requirements in ways that both extend punishment and limit their ability to successfully participate in mainstream institutions.

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The Politics of Inequality
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83909-363-0

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Book part
Publication date: 1 September 2008

Katherine Beckett and Angelina Godoy

Across the Americas, public discussions of crime and penal practices have become increasingly punitive even as political struggles have resulted in a broad shift toward…

Abstract

Across the Americas, public discussions of crime and penal practices have become increasingly punitive even as political struggles have resulted in a broad shift toward Constitutional democracy. In this chapter, we suggest that the spread of tough anti-crime talk and practice is, paradoxically, a response to efforts to expand and deepen democracy. Punitive crime talk is useful to political actors seeking to limit formal and social citizenship rights for several reasons. First, it ostensibly targets problematic behavior rather than particular social groups, and thus appears to be consistent with democratic norms. At the same time, crime talk often acquires coded meanings that enable those who mobilize it to tap into inter-group hostility, anxieties, and fear. In addition, the emphasis on the threat of crime and disorder offers those seeking to limit democratic expansion a way to legitimate truncated visions of the rights and entitlements of citizenship. Tough anti-crime rhetoric often resonates with those who have experienced or fear the loss of symbolic and/or material benefits as a result of democratic reform. In short, the broad shift toward hyper-penality is, at least in part, a consequence of struggles over political democracy, citizenship and governance across the Americas.

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Studies in Law, Politics and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-090-2

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Book part
Publication date: 29 November 2021

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Sport, Gender and Mega-Events
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-937-6

Book part
Publication date: 25 August 2009

Steve Herbert and Katherine Beckett

In Seattle and other cities, recent expansions of trespass law make the regulation of public space easier and more extensive. A range of new tools allow police officials…

Abstract

In Seattle and other cities, recent expansions of trespass law make the regulation of public space easier and more extensive. A range of new tools allow police officials to clear spaces of those deemed undesirable; they define zones of exclusion and increase the police's power to make arrests. The use of these tools extends contemporary practices of using criminal law to address instances of urban “disorder.” We draw on data from Seattle to catalog some of these new tools, the capabilities they create, and the implications they generate. One important such implication is that they work to push undesirables so far to the margins – spatially, socially, politically, legally – as to render them far outside the body politic. The use of these techniques thus raises important questions about the advisability of addressing social problems by increasing the power of the criminal law.

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Special Issue New Perspectives on Crime and Criminal Justice
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-653-9

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2006

Mengyan Dai and Junhyuk Ryu

167

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Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 29 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Sport, Gender and Mega-Events
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-937-6

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Details

Sport, Gender and Mega-Events
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-937-6

Abstract

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Sport, Gender and Mega-Events
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-937-6

Book part
Publication date: 17 September 2012

Leonard Feldman

This chapter brings together the insights of Stuart Scheingold's work on political criminology and urban social control with subsequent work on the politics of affect or…

Abstract

This chapter brings together the insights of Stuart Scheingold's work on political criminology and urban social control with subsequent work on the politics of affect or “public feelings.” I argue that Scheingold prefigured the turn to affect in his study of crime politics and that his attention to the way affect-driven politicization plays out differently at different political levels (local, national) usefully complicates the current focus on national politics.

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Special Issue: The Legacy of Stuart Scheingold
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-344-5

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Book part
Publication date: 19 July 2021

Abstract

Details

The Politics of Inequality
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83909-363-0

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