The Deviant Mystique: Involvements, Realities, and Regulation

The Deviant Mystique: Involvements, Realities, and Regulation

The Deviant Mystique: Involvements, Realities, and Regulation

The Deviant Mystique: Involvements, Realities, and Regulation


Considers the social construction of moralities, identities, activities, subcultures, and control efforts within the various contexts of community life.


As used herein, the deviant mystique refers to the allures and fascinations, the anxieties and fears, and the disaffections and repulsions that people associate with wrongdoing and morality. This statement is not intended to encourage or intensify the deviant mystique, but instead acknowledges these human viewpoints and the ways that people engage the deviance phenomenon. Accordingly, this material is intended to address any and all instances of anyone (person or group) doing anything that any audience (person or group) might consider "deviant" in some manner.

While the study of deviance extends much beyond the auras or intrigues that people develop with respect to certain realms of activity, it is important to consider the ways in which the deviant mystique enters into people's theaters of operation so that we might more adequately move through and beyond the various intrigues that people may experience en route to a more complete examination of the deviance-making process.

In developing this volume, we have not only endeavored to generate more comprehensive interlinkages of social theory and enacted realities as these pertain to the study of deviance as something in the making, but also have attempted to produce a statement that would put newcomers to the field in closer contact with those who are actively involved in examining deviance as a socially constructed phenomenon.

Our objective, thus, is to generate a sustained focus on the ways in which people define, experience, and act toward deviance within the many arenas of activity that constitute the human community. There is no interest in controlling or rehabilitating those considered deviants from one or other standpoints. Likewise, there is no attempt to condemn, liberate, or change any forms or fields of activity. Instead, the emphasis is on examining the ways in which people engage the various life-worlds in which they find themselves and suggesting ways in which the study of deviance, as reflected in instances of humanly engaged activity, might be pursued in more direct, participant-informed terms.

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