A captivating book that advances new developments in theoretical criminology, Crime as Structured Action explores the relation between structure and action and among gender, race, and class, both of which are at the forefront of contemporary debates in the social sciences. Author James W. Messerschmidt skillfully demonstrates that to understand crime we must appreciate how crime operates through a complex series of gender, race, and class practices. Crime must be examined by focusing on people in specific social settings, what they do to construct social relations and social structures, and how these social structures constrain and channel behavior in specific ways. The twin focal points of Messerschmidt's approach are the inseparability of structure and action and the situational salience of constructing gender, race, class, and those acts we label "crime."

Murderous Managers

Murderous managers

It has been over 10 years since the space shuttle Challenger exploded in midair, just 73 seconds into flight, killing all seven crew members. The President's Commission (1986) investigating the explosion concluded that the loss of Challenger was due to a failure in the joint between two segments of the right solid rocket booster (SRB). O-rings, intended to prevent hot gases from escaping through the joint during the propellant burn of the rocket engine, failed to seal properly because of the extremely cold temperature at launch time (29 degrees F). More specifically, the cold temperature impaired O-ring resiliency, allowing the hot gases to escape, ignite, and within seconds penetrate the external tank.1

The President's Commission (1986) further concluded that problems with the ...

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