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Communities, identities and crime$
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Basia Spalek

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9781861348043

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781861348043.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
Communities, identities and crime

Basia Spalek

Policy Press

This book explores the notions of identity and community as well as the issues that they raise for a criminal justice context. A number of high-profile cases — including, for example, the racist murders of Stephen Lawrence in 1993 and Zahid Mubarek in 2000, and the homophobia-motivated murder of Jody Dobrowski in 2005 — illustrate the significance of social identities when considering crime, victimisation and criminal justice. This book is also a reaction to a number of crises facing contemporary criminology and attempts to broaden out criminological work by focusing upon identities and communities. It demonstrates that, in taking a critical stance towards the notions of identity and community, this necessitates an exploration of sameness/difference, how researchers and policy makers can take account of the Other, those social groupings that are comprised of the delegitimised, marginalised and excluded, and raises questions about what counts as social justice, including whose perspectives are considered in criminal justice policy-making arenas.

Keywords:   identity, community, criminal justice, crime, victimisation, social identities, criminology, social justice, murders

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