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By Frances Heidensohn (auth.)
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Additional resources for Crime and Society
In America itself the Chicago tradition of bringing the bad news back from the mean city streets has survived in powerful sociological and journalistic accounts by Suttles (1968, 1972), and others. In Britain in the 1980s the hardest realities of inner-city life and crime have been most directly and tellingly conveyed by media reporting of riots, drug abuse and fears of crime. The urge to make sense of and explain the disturbing phenomena of crime and victimisation is, as I suggested earlier, very strong, especially since urban crime seems peculiarly threatening and disturbing.
2. Second, it provided a sociological paradigm, however inadequate, for a range of studies of crime and deviance. 3. Those studies are in themselves important and also form part of developments in sociology which have provided one of the most interesting parts of our heritage. 4. The outline given above gives only some idea of the debate which anomie theory engendered. This debate and subsequent ones characterised American criminological research after the Second World War and played an important part in its development.
Areas which are growing, now that new technology removes the need for industrial concentrations, including previously 'green spaces' such as Southern California, East Anglia in Britain, and rural Bavaria (Hall, 1985). At the same time, in Second and Third World countries, cities are often growing exponentially. Mexico City is the world's biggest metropolis. Cities, especially their inner areas, are therefore in relative decline, losing population and having tracts burnt out or boarded-up. Yet crime is perceived as much a problem in such areas as it was fifty or a hundred years ago (Pearson, 1983).