Crime and Modernization: The Impact of Industrialization and Urbanization on Crime

Crime and Modernization: The Impact of Industrialization and Urbanization on Crime

Crime and Modernization: The Impact of Industrialization and Urbanization on Crime

Crime and Modernization: The Impact of Industrialization and Urbanization on Crime

Synopsis

This book synthesizes historical accounts of crime and civil disorder with the literature of modern urban studies and contemporary criminality.

Excerpt

Anthropologists, political scientists, geographers, and other social scientists have studied the impact of modernization on contemporary society. Criminologists refer to the concept loosely without attaching any particular definition to modernization. In diverse studies scholars of crime refer to the "modernization theory" of criminality, but this theoretical approach has never been fully expounded in the literature.

Two decades ago criminologists first focused their attention on the impact of modernization on the development of patterns of criminal behavior. These initial studies were never fully developed and, therefore, the analysis of the effect of development on criminal behavior has remained in the embryo stage. Research on crime produced in the past 20 years and especially in the last decade by scholars in many disciplines has made it possible to reexamine and expand our understanding of the impact of this form of social change on crime and the criminal offender.

The expansion and the application of a theory of modernization to criminal behavior have not been possible for most American scholars because they lack the linguistic skills prerequisite to this necessarily historical and comparative research. But European scholars who possess the language skills fail to focus on modernization theory because their research concentrates primarily on studies of characteristics of individual offenders or criminological problems of national concern.

The development of a full-blown theory of modernization applied to criminality had not previously been possible because of the absence . . .

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