Despite its wide usage, the concept of the “crime wave” has rarely been given explicit and detailed attention by criminologists. It is important that we understand where they come from, how they develop and what their consequences are. When Crime Waves offers an in-depth exploration of a large number of social issues involved in the study of crime waves. Issues such as how and why crime rates change over time, why some types of crime and not others come in waves, and the role played by the mass media, politicians, and interest group leaders in the promotion of crime waves are discussed to help students develop analytical skills and apply them to real-world situations.
Critically examines the phenomenon of crime waves in an engaging fashion; Provides multiple perspectives via historical and contemporary examples throughout the book; Delves into the role played by politicians and the media in creating the perception that a crime wave has occured; Presents themes of myth-making, cultural imagery, and social constructionism
When Crime Waves is intended to be a supplementary text for undergraduate criminology and sociology courses including Introduction to Criminology and Criminal Justice, Crime & Media, Crime & Society, Crime & Punishment, Sociology of Crime, Sociology of Deviance, Social Problems, and Criminal Behavior.
Vincent Sacco is a professor in the department of sociology at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. His research interests are in criminology and urban sociology, which relate to the study of criminology, as well as the study of public perceptions of and reactions to crime. In approaching criminology, his work emphasizes the study of “criminal events” and investigates why some people are more likely to be victimized by crime; when and where crimes occur; and what contributes to the views on crime held by the police, lawmakers, and members of the general public.
Mass Media and Crime Waves
Mass Media and Crime Waves
An understanding of mass media structures and processes is central to any effort to make sense of how crime waves unfold. That crime waves might find their origins in the ways in which journalists construct the world for their audiences is not a new insight. More than a century ago, legendary American reporter Lincoln Steffens recognized the power of media managers to shape the collective view that crime is spiraling out of control. In his autobiography, Steffens (1931) wrote, “There's always a crime wave.” Perhaps somewhat more specifically, there is, in Steffens's view, always the potential for a crime wave. What varies over time, for Steffens, is not the raw material (or actual crimes) out of ...