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Seductions of Crime: Moral and Sensual Attractions in Doing Evil.

In his searing ethnography of 1930s Southern tenant farmers, James Agee (Agee and Evans, 1960: 12-13) wrote:

If I could do it, I'd do no writing at all here. It would be photographs;

the rest would be fragments of cloth, bits of cotton, lumps of earth,

records of speech, pieces of wood and iron, phials of odors, plates of

food and excrement.... A piece of the body torn out by the roots

might be more to the point.

Jack Katz's Seductions of Crime: The Moral and Sensual Attractions in Doing Evil manifests the same experiential passion, the same "fascination to follow in detail the lived contours of crime" (p. 317), the same desire to confront the reader with the "lived sensuality," the "lived experience of criminality" (pp. 312, 139). If he could, Katz would surely update Agee to include video tapes of the badass' "bump" and "whatchulookinat?" ploys (pp. 107-112), sound recordings of the stickup man's terse command to "give it up" (p. 176), and patches tom from the homeboy's ritually white undershirt (p. 121).

For Katz, such sensual details matter because they form the phenomenological foreground of criminality, the immediate, interactional dynamic through which criminals construct crime. Katz argues that only with an awareness and analysis of these foreground factors can we understand the "moral and sensual attractions in doing evil," and thus the nature of criminality itself. As he says, "my overall objective in this book is to demonstrate that the causes of crime are constructed by the offenders themselves, but the causes they construct are lures and pressures that they experience as independently moving them toward crime" (p. 216).

In exploring the social and epistemic dynamics of criminal events, Katz rides the borderlands between methods and domains of inquiry most often kept apart. The book's method of inquiry rests somewhere between the ethnographer's immersion in the particulars of a situation and the survey researcher's attempt to accumulate and compile trans-situational information. The book's subject matter appears at first glance to be psychological -- the cover jacket proclaims that Katz "explores the psyche and enters the soul of the criminal," and Katz does indeed investigate individual motivations, mind states, and emotions. At a closer look, though, the subject matter is sociological, concerning both the social construction of the criminal event and the criminal's psyche and soul.(1)

Moreover, the book's intention is not only to pay attention to the microsociology of crime -- the interactional strategies and personal politics out of which a criminal event is constructed -- but to link this microsociology to a macrosociological analysis of "background factors" like social class and ethnicity. Katz (p. 312) argues:

Whatever the historical causes for treating background factors as the

theoretical core for the empirical study of crime, the point of this volume

is to demonstrate that it is not necessary to constitute the field

back to front. We may begin with the foreground, attempting to discover

common or homogeneous criminal projects and to test explanations

of the necessary and sufficient steps through which people

construct given forms of crime. If we take as our primary research

commitment an exploration of the distinctive phenomena of crime,

we may produce not just ad hoc bits of description or a collection of

provocative anecdotes, but a systematic empirical theory of crime -- one

that explains at the individual level the causal process of committing

a crime and that accounts at the aggregate level for recurrently

documented correlations with biographical and ecological

background factors.

As often happens in this sort of boundary-breaking work, the results are ambiguous, incomplete, disturbing -- and exciting.(2)

The Seductions of Theory and Method

In investigating the foreground of criminality and attempting to lay the groundwork for a "systematic empirical theory of crime," Katz draws on phenomenological and interactionist traditions in sociology and criminology. He acknowledges Harold Garfinkel and Howard Becker, noting that the latter "some thirty years ago laid out a foundation for this work" (p. vii). He likewise cites Becker's "Becoming a Marihuana User" (1953) and David Matza's Becoming Deviant (1969) as "two prominent exceptions" to the sociology of deviance's failure to "take up the challenge of explaining the quality of deviant experience" (p. 325 fn. 3). Beyond these direct acknowledgments and a brief mention of symbolic interactionism and phenomenology (p. 8), Katz spends little time in conversation with earlier theories or theorists; but his emphasis is nonetheless clear. Early on, for example, his anchoring of crime's "distinctive sensual dynamics" in "everyday, routine human experience" (p. 4), and his contention that we may catch sight of these dynamics in "exceptional" or "incongruent" moments (p. 7), echoes Garfinkel's (1967: 35-75) early explorations into the "routine grounds of everyday activities" and breaching. Throughout the book, Katz blends the phenomenologist's precise attention to situational detail with the interactionist's concern for the situation's social negotiation and construction.

From this position Katz counters two elements of mainstream criminology. Broadly, he attacks the "statistical and correlational findings of positivist criminology" (p. 3), the dislocated number sets that cross-match crime's background factors without ever getting at its phenomenological foreground. More narrowly, he takes apart the "sentimental materialism" (p. 313) of Robert Merton (1968), and, subsequently, of Richard Cloward and Lloyd Ohlin (1960). Katz argues that the lived experience of crime, as engaged in by both juveniles and adult career criminals, cannot be reduced to materialist motivations, to the adaptations of Mertonian innovators and retreatists. He concludes that the materialist perspective is therefore characterized by an "overwhelming inadequacy for grasping the experiential facts of crime" (p. 314).

To get at the "experiential facts of crime," Katz turns away from positivist methods and to the methodology of phenomenology and interactionism: the naturalistic ethnography. If 30 years ago Becker laid Katz's theoretical foundation, he laid the methodological cornerstone as well. In Outsiders, Becker (1963: 166) not only demonstrated the methods of participant observation and ethnography, but argued for their ongoing use, since "there are simply not enough studies that provide us with facts about the lives of deviants as they live them." Around the same time, and as part of the same evolving perspective, Polsky (1969: 109, 115, 133) likewise engaged in and argued aggressively for this sort of research:

... if we are to make a major advance in our scientific understanding

of criminal lifestyles, criminal subcultures, and their relation to the

larger society, we must undertake genuine field research on these

people ... as they normally go about their work and play.... Sociology

isn't worth much if it is not ultimately about real live people in their

ordinary life-situations.

Working from the legacy of Becker, Polsky, and others, Katz embraces this research tradition in criminology. He takes care to express appreciation and support for those engaged in criminological field work; draws throughout the book on a remarkable variety of ethnographies, field reports, "nonfiction novels," and other qualitative sources; and grounds his analysis in the information these sources provide.(3)

In doing so, though, Katz is seduced into a dilemma by which he does and does not follow the injunctions of Becker, Polsky, and the tradition of ethnographic/interactionist criminology. He certainly does work within the ethnographic imperative to the extent that he privileges first-hand, qualitative case studies over statistical summaries, and attempts through these case studies to pay attention to the rhythmic nuances of criminal acts and interactions. He fails to follow this imperative, though -- or at least pushes the limits of what it might reasonably mean -- in two ways. First, he draws his information not from his own ethnographic work, but rather from a wide range of extant ethnographies. Second, he supplements this second-hand ethnographic information with information from a variety of non-ethnographic studies that offer a very mixed bag of methodologies and findings.

Katz's methodological dilemma -- that he affirms first-hand field work, but utilizes it and other methods only at a distance, second-hand -- develops into a further dilemma of knowledge and perception. The strength of Katz's argument rests on his ability to capture the subtle, negotiated, situational dynamics of crime, to demonstrate the attractions and seductions that develop within the criminal event. In attempting this, though, Katz uses research that may or may not have caught these subtleties. To begin with, since the research accounts are those of others and are written from other perspectives, they may well communicate certain aspects of the criminal event, but not others. How is Katz, and how are we, to know? Moreover, although he often notes their limitations, Katz utilizes data sources -- crime reports and statistics, police records, prison interviews -- that by their nature obscure the immediate, situational dynamics of crime. Such sources, of course, come dangerously close to the "positivist" criminology that Katz criticizes and to what Polsky (1969: 141) disdained as the criminology of the "jailhouse or courthouse sociologist." Together, these problems leave Katz at times in positions that not only undercut the most basic tenets of field work, but also his line of argument: he is left to deduce from the data, and thus impute to the criminals, the very subtleties he wishes to observe and study.

Chapter Five's discussion of "Doing Stickup," for example, is based largely on a "data set" of brief narrative accounts that Franklin Zimring and James Zuehl (1986) reconstructed from police records, and that Katz subsequently reworked. Notice the layers of meaning and interpretation between the subtleties of these events and our apprehension of them: we encounter the events and their participants by way of police records, by way of Zimring and Zuehl, and by way of Katz. Katz returns to this "data set" in Chapters Six and Seven as well, where he examines the data for "qualitative detail" (p. 251) and quantifies patterns that he discovers in them. But again, the question: What manner of "qualitative detail" remains in data sifted through so many sieves? Based on popular journalistic accounts like those of Truman Capote (1965) and Joseph Wambaugh (1973), Chapter Eight's discussion of "|senseless' murder" risks a different sort of problem: the writer's imposition of too much "qualitative detail" after the fact. As Katz himself implies, the value of such works certainly must be balanced against their limitations -- limitations imposed not only by literary rather than sociological inquiry, but also by the pressures of lucrative popular media markets.(4)

Perhaps, though, these methodological problems point less to the failure of Katz's research strategy than to his success in conceptualizing crime. If we set out, with Katz, to study crime as a social event, rather than a derivative analytic category, to pay attention to crime as a lived, socially constructed experience, rather than a statistical residue, particular methodological problems must arise. As researchers, we face not only the dangerous inaccessibility of the criminal event, but also its brevity and unpredictability, its fleeting and momentary nature. As a statistical aggregate, or as the product of background variables, crime holds still for us to study; as a phenomenon constructed in the moment it occurs, crime can rarely so much as be glimpsed first hand. Studying crime as Katz defines it, then, means a paucity of observational data, a reliance on post hoc accounts, and other methodological problems.(5) There is thus a certain irony in Katz's (p. 311) reference to the "readily available, detailed meanings of common criminality": such meanings are certainly more readily available to the street fighter or stickup man than the criminologist.

These methodological problems also develop from the important, but unenviable task that Katz (p. 312) sets for himself: to "discover common or homogeneous criminal projects," and thus to begin a "systematic empirical theory of crime," by moving from the particulars of each case to accumulated, cross-case patterns. Inevitably, such projects play out a set of tensions and contradictions: between stepping into the nuances of each case and stepping back to look for commonalities and patterns between cases; between a research methodology of first-hand immersion and a theory-building technique of second-hand appropriation; between the primacy of ethnographic particulars and the elegance of theoretical models. Such contradictions are woven, of course, not only into Katz's project, but also into the broader enterprise of criminology itself.

The Sensual Attractions of Katz's Sociology

Along the way to a trans-situational notion of crime, Katz develops fascinating sociological accounts of particular criminal situations and events. Whether or not he achieves a sociology of crime, he certainly creates sensually rich sociological explorations of crimes -- that is, of distinct criminal events. At times these essays hold together, leading the reader from one to the next; at other times they read as a series of disconnected insights, as momentary bursts of creative analysis. Even in these latter cases, though, the sociology is seductive.

In Chapter Three, for example, Katz looks at the "ways of the badass" -- that is, at the ways in which young men construct tough, alien identities. Here Katz focuses on the interplay of social status, personal identity and style, and the symbolism of the badass. In a nicely detailed discussion, Katz (pp. 88, 90) considers dark sunglasses, guttural noises, the "ghetto bop and the barrio stroll," tattoos, and other stylistic strategies, which together form an "alternative deviant culture." He in turn examines specific manifestations: the "coherent deviant esthetic" (p. 90) of the Mexican-American cholo and the British (and later U.S.) punk; the youth gang's ritualized affection for weapons; the "bump" and other stylized devices of aggression.

In this discussion -- as in his discussions of "street elite" style (see pp. 120-121, 152-153), ritualized Black street talk (see pp. 266-268), and symbolic violence (see for example pp. 34-36, 133-137) -- Katz sketches an esthetics of crime. As Hebdige (1979), Cosgrove (1984), and others have done in different contexts, Katz shows that nuances of style and meaning lie at the very heart of individual and collective deviance. The black leather jacket and the zoot suit, the cholo's closing "Shaa-haa," and the young African American's opening "shit" (see pp. 83-87) -- these are not mere "affectations" added to criminal projects and identities, but the building blocks of crime as it is lived and practiced. To speak, then, of the "culture of violence" or the "culture of crime" is to talk not only about background factors that perpetuate violence or crime, but also about the style and symbolism of its foreground.

Chapter Four's inquiry into urban adolescent "gangs" -- "street elites" -- locates this esthetic of crime within patterns of social class, ethnicity, authority, and age. Katz demonstrates not only how these groups "style themselves as elites" (p. 120), follow "esthetic leadership" (p. 151) and battle for "symbolic rewards" (p. 114), but also how these styles of deviance develop out of the lived experience of inner-city adolescence. Thus, Katz argues, "homeboys" and other low-income, minority street elites ritually celebrate their neighborhood ties, where middle-income, white adolescents attempt symbolically to conceal or destroy their origins. Street elites also collectively structure and sustain violence, and use this violence to transcend childhood, establish sovereignty, and generate an aura of dread. Moreover, when street elites encounter the "mundane authority" (p. 145) of the school, they can draw on the collective power of the group not only to oppose that authority, but also symbolically to transcend it.

As Katz discusses young "badasses" and adolescent "street elites," a pattern begins to emerge. As he discusses youthful shoplifting and other "sneaky thrills" (Chapter Two), and elsewhere the fact that "robbers are overwhelmingly young men" (p. 170), the pattern further takes shape. The pattern, of course, is formed by the intersection of youth and crime. Much of Katz's work has to do not just with the seductions of crime, but with the seductions of adolescent crime, the moral and sensual attractions of evil for the young. Katz does not seem to take much notice of this issue as such, other than, for example, his brief discussions of adolescence's limits as an explanation of shoplifting (pp. 76-78) and the inability of Merton's materialism to account for adolescent crime (pp. 314-315). Since this is not the book's focus, this inattentiveness is understandable. Nonetheless, the heavy representation of youth crime in Katz's analysis raises all sorts of intriguing questions.

Does Katz's thesis as to the sensual attractions of crime help explain specifically those forms of youthful deviance often categorized as "juvenile delinquency"? Given the social construction of youth in our culture, is there something particularly seductive about the immediate dynamic of sneak theft, trespass, and vandalism? In my own field research into urban graffiti, for example, young graffiti writers consistently report that one of the central attractions of doing graffiti is the "adrenaline rush," the incandescent excitement of creativity and illegality as the paint hits the wall. Does the same hold true for other youthful crimes? More broadly, what about youth and youth subcultures accelerates the development of distinctive styles of deviance, of an esthetically rich criminal foreground? Does this, as Katz (p. 73; see pp. 76-77) suggests in the context of "sneaky thrills," have to do with the interplay of private and public identity, and "personal esthetic triumph"? Does this in turn imply that "acceptable" youth subcultures -- those organized around music or fashion, for example -- and "deviant" youth subcultures exist not as distinct alternatives, but along a continuum of stylized social marginality and alternate meaning? Most broadly, does this then mean that the confluence of youth and crime develops out of the politics of youth, out of the relative powerlessness and marginality of the young, and their response?(6)

In Chapters Five through Seven, Katz's investigation of "stickup" likewise unpacks the phenomenological foreground and social background, and in turn raises a series of important issues. Katz begins with an elegantly intertwined analysis of two issues: the relative rationality or irrationality of robbery and the development of the "hardman" who undertakes a career in stickup. Katz argues, against the conventional view of robbery as rational, that "the commitment of the persistent robber must transcend rational considerations" (p. 179). Within this irrational commitment, though, apparently random or brutal violence becomes, for the robber, reasonable and rational. It serves several purposes, not the least of which is to establish a self-serving and self-protecting reputation as a person who engages in "irrational" violence; as Katz (p. 184) says, with a nod to Becker, "in effect, robbers can use 'irrational' violence against victims as a resource for building their careers as immoral entrepreneurs."

Here, in this violent world, emerges the hardman -- the man who builds his criminal career and his identity around the violent control of chaotic situations. As Katz (pp. 187, 193) says:

In the final analysis, the commitment according to which violence in

robberies makes sense to the offenders is the commitment to be a

hard man -- a person whose will, once manifested, must prevail, regardless

of practical calculations of physical self-interest.... Put another

way, the practical constraints on making a career of stickups are

such that one cannot simply adopt violence as an instrumental device,

to be enacted or dropped as situational contingencies dictate.... [Y]ou

must live the commitment to deviance. You must really mean it.

Embedded in the hardman's criminal career are, of course, two criminological issues. The first has to do with the situated rationality and irrationality of crime; as Katz shows, any evaluation of crime's rational or irrational properties must consider the social situations in which those properties are constructed. Given this, further questions unfold: to what extent, for example, does the hardman's violence achieve effects that he rationally calculates, and to what extent are these effects unintended by-products of violent predispositions and situations? The second has to do with the notion of a criminal "career," and, as Katz shows, the various and subtle processes that must be considered if this concept is to be applied to the evolution of criminal involvement and identity.(7)

Katz proceeds to explore the broader social context of hardmen and stickup. Katz locates stickup within a seductively hedonistic world of illicit sex, illegal drugs, gambling, and a perpetual search for "action." Moreover, he traces the manner in which career stickup men "institutionalize" action in their lives through "cross-cutting networks" (pp. 198, 210) of illicit activity, and thus "position themselves to be seduced into action time and again, over against their own better, more prudent judgment" (p. 214). Katz then expands his view to consider "gender and ethnicity in the background of stickup" (p. 237), and in so doing develops an elegant, detailed analysis of the overrepresentation of Black males in stickup. He demonstrates how "stickup enacts and extends a particular version of being male" (p. 238), which derives from patterns of illicit action, risk, and gaming. He in turn links Black ethnicity and robbery by examining the nature of the Black community, the economic structure of racketeering in contrast to the "cultural individualism and structural atomization" of hardmen, and the transcendent appeal of the "bad nigger" (pp. 262, 263).

Here and elsewhere, Katz explores not only the immediate social construction of deviance, but also its entanglement with "background factors" like gender, ethnicity, and social class. At the same time, he is careful to distance his analysis from any sort of structural determinism; he chooses to conclude his chapter on gender, ethnicity, and stickup, for example, with the statement, "straightforward class imagery does not seem to work" (p. 273). What, then, are the implications of Katz's work for critical criminology?

The Seductions of Crime and the Politics of Criminality

Although the materialism that Katz criticizes is more that of Merton than of Marx, his critique extends by implication to components of left criminology. To the extent that left criminologists rely on positivist methods and epistemologies -- that is, as far as they design their research around "objective" measures of crime and criminality, and then accept the "facts" that these measures generate as explanatory variables -- they obscure rather than reveal the interactional process through which crime is constructed. According to Katz (p. 312), to the extent that they conceptualize crime and criminality as caused or determined by structures of class inequality, they "constitute the field back to front." When Katz (p. 311) argues regarding criminology that "most of the intellectual action is within a small and relatively tame segment on the left side of the scale," it is not at all clear to which segment, or to what sort of tameness, he refers. Clearly, he thinks as little of the left side's traditional criminology as of the right's.

Despite this, the disjunctions between Katz's criminology and certain aspects of left criminology are not insurmountable; much can in fact be learned from the intersection of the two. If, for example, we understand social and economic inequality to be a cause, or at least a primary context, for crime, we can also understand that this inequality is mediated and expressed through the situational dynamics, the symbolism and style, of criminal events. To speak of a criminal "event," then, is to talk about the act and actions of the criminal, the unfolding interactional dynamics of the crime, and the patterns of inequality and injustice embedded in the thoughts, words, and actions of those involved. In a criminal event, as in other moments of everyday life, structures of social class or ethnicity intertwine with situational decisions, personal style, and symbolic references. Thus, while we cannot make sense of crime without analyzing structures of inequality, we cannot make sense of crime by only analyzing these structures, either. The esthetics of criminal events interlocks with the political economy of criminality.

The youthful "sneaky thrills" that Katz describes in Chapter Two -- vandalism, theft, and especially shoplifting -- exemplify these interconnections. As Katz shows, the event of shoplifting has a "magical" (p. 54) and seductive quality about it that develops independently of any overt need by the shoplifter for the shoplifted product. For the shoplifter, the event unfolds as a sort of thrilling and sensually gratifying game, a dramatic and illicit adventure. Even as we focus on the criminal event of shoplifting, though, we must ask: What are the origins of this magically seductive adventure and why does it grow out of the illicit acquisition of consumer goods? Answers to this question would certainly have to do with the creation of needs, the structuring of consumption, and the commodification of desire under late capitalism. Of course, these processes alone cannot explain the particular, situational dynamic of shoplifting; but neither can that dynamic be made sense of unless these processes are understood. Shoplifting explains capitalism in the same way that capitalism explains shoplifting.

This type of criminological analysis obviously parallels recent developments in areas as disparate as mainstream U.S. sociology, British cultural studies, postmodern social theory, and feminist theory. Although certainly not reducible to a single theme, these emerging analytic orientations cluster around some central ideas: the texture of everyday life -- the popular culture of people, groups, and events -- matters. Personal choices and styles adopted within everyday life are profoundly political. Situated language, symbolism, and meaning are not epiphenomena, but rather definitive components of social life, inexorably intertwined with the economic and political structure of society.(8)

These notions, in turn, force progressive criminologists again to question conventional distinctions between crime and resistance, to muddy the boundaries between unconscious response and conscious resistance. As we coordinate Katz's phenomenological stare with the critical gaze of leftist social theory, we may wish to reexamine the experience of crime as lived by its participants. As we do, moreover, we may begin to see differently all sorts of sensually appealing, if theoretically underdeveloped, criminal events: vandalism, graffiti writing, shoplifting, and the like. Until we understand what these events mean for their perpetrators, we would be hard pressed to dismiss them as without political content.(9)

Does this imply that every broken window, every leather-jacketed street fighter spitting teeth and blood, and every scooped-out liquor store cash register, every Krylon-tagged alley signifies an act of class-conscious resistance? Absolutely not, and maybe yes. Our answer depends, at least in part, on what we mean by "conscious." As Katz has shown, the logic of such events is partly situational; understandings and meanings of the event blossom within its interactional boundaries. The question thus becomes, not "Is this crime or resistance?" but "In what ways might the participants in this event be conscious of, and resistant to, the contradictions in which they are caught?" Whatever the answer, two things seem certain. The first is that we must take the time to pay attention to what people are actually doing when they stick up liquor stores, spray graffiti, or shoplift shoes. The second is that political-economic structures -- and thus power, control, subordination, and insubordination -- are embedded in these events as surely as in governmental scandals and labor strikes.(10)

Whether or not Katz's Seductions of Crime "could have been the work that revitalized deviance theory, that brought phenomenology and symbolic interactionism back into the mainstream of criminology" (Goode, 1990: 11), it can certainly serve to spark critical criminology by renewing the creative interplay between interactionist and political-economic perspectives. In discussing the development of alternative criminology in Britain in the late 1960s, Cohen (1988: 68) has spoken of the "adoption of a structurally and politically informed version of labeling theory." Katz's work renews the possibilities for such a theory -- or, turned the other way, a critical criminology informed by interactionist perspectives. In either configuration, the dialectic between situations and structures of criminality, between the style and substance of crime, promises to be exciting.


(1.) As Katz (p. 326fn.) says in an endnote to Chapter One:

Note that there is no question here of "getting into the offender's mind." The key evidentiary

facts are what was said and done, in what order, and what was not said and not

done. Neither the evidence nor the theoretical focus in on what is "in the mind" of the

subject. (2.) As Feyerabend (1975) and Kuhn (1970) have shown in the philosophy of science, and as our own experience in academia tells us, the most exciting work often occurs not within disciplines or traditions, but between and beyond them. This being the case, we had best be careful about how we evaluate a new work, in a book review or elsewhere. An evaluation of a work on the basis of thoroughness, completeness, or methodological rigor, as defined within a particular traditi may not serve the cause; in fact, it may well act as a conservative force, which blocks innovation, advancement, and progressive change. (3.) Katz's perspective on crime and methodology is perhaps best reflected in Goffman's (1961: ix-x) contention that:

... any group of persons -- prisoners, primitives, pilots, or patients -- develops a life of

their own that becomes meaningful, reasonable, and normal once you get close to it,

and that a good way to learn about any of these worlds is to submit oneself in the company

of the members to the daily round of petty contingencies to which they are

subject. (4.) Katz (p. 347 fn.) addresses this problem more directly, but not entirely satisfactorily, in an endnote to one of his chapters on "stickup":

It is reasonable to worry that the ubiquitous presence of these "sensational" themes in

the life histories says more about the criteria of publishing than about robbers' lives in

general. Were it not for the statistical findings of the various studies of career offenders

... and the diversity of the authors' personal interests and institutional affiliations,

this methodological worry would be overwhelming. (5.) Katz (p. 281) notes this post hoc problem in regard to "|senseless' murder":

... we should appreciate the constraints that are distinctive to the phenomena under

study. Given that these events are exceptional in both statistical and moral senses, writers

will almost invariably come to them after the fact. (6.) For more on these issues, see, for example, Cohen (1980), Greenberg (1977), Hebdige (1979), Brake (1980), and Schwendinger and Schwendinger (1985). (7.) On the dynamics of deviant careers, see, of course, Becker (1963) and Goffman (1961). See also, for example, the articles gathered in the "Into and Out of Deviant Careers" section of Soc Problems 31,2, (1983) -- especially Adler and Adler (1983) and Shover (1983) -- and Luckenbill and Best (1981) on problems with the deviant "career" notion. (8.) For a sense of the rediscovery of cultural concerns in mainstream sociology, see, for example, Peterson (1990). Angela McRobbie's work (see, for example, 1980, 1986, 1989) offers a remarkable blend of feminist, postmodern, and cultural studies perspectives on these issues. For other British cultural studies and postmodern perspectives, see, for example, Cohen (1980), Hall and Jefferson (1976), Hebdige (1979), Foster (1985), and Chambers (1986). The work of the Frankfurt School, of course, laid much of the groundwork for any politics of culture. (9.) For more on notions of crime and resistance, see, for example, Atlanta and Alexander (1989), Sholle (1990), Hebdige (1979), and Hall and Jefferson (1976). (10.) As the left realists would remind us, this also means paying close attention to the actual, lived effects of these events on their victims. Thus, Katz's (p. vii) statement that "if guided by e this text does not compel sympathy.... I suspect that readers who follow the text through several chapters will emerge from the various offenders' worlds at least as often in disgust as symp echoes Cohen's (1980: xxviii) claim that "we can understand without being too respectful."


Adler, Patricia A. and Peter Adler 1983 "Shifts and Oscillations in Deviant Careers: The Case of Upper Level Drug Dealers and Smugglers." Social Problems 31: 195-207. Agee, James and Walker Evans 1960 Let Us Now Praise Famous Men. New York: Ballantine. Atlanta, C. and G. Alexander 1989 "Wild Style: Graffiti Painting." Angela McRobbie (ed.), Zoot Suits and Second-Hand Dresses. Houndmills, U.K.: Macmillan: 156-168. Becker, Howard S. 1963 Outsiders: Studies in the Sociology of Deviance. New York: The Free Press. 1953 "Becoming a Marihuana User." American Journal of Sociology 59: 235-242. Brake, Mike 1980 The Sociology of Youth Culture and Youth Subcultures. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul. Capote, Truman 1965 In Cold Blood. New York: New American Library. Chambers, Iain 1986 Popular Culture: The Metropolitan Experience. London: Methuen. Cloward, Richard A. and Lloyd E. Ohlin 1960 Delinquency and Opportunity. New York: The Free Press. Cohen, Stanley 1988 Against Criminology. New Brunswick: Transaction. 1980 Folk Devils and Moral Panics. London: MacGibbon and Kee. Cosgrove, Stuart 1984 "The Zoot Suit and Style Warfare." Radical America 18: 39-51. Feyerabend, Paul 1975 Against Method. London: Verso. Foster, Hal (ed.) 1985 Postmodern Culture. London: Pluto. Garfinkel, Harold 1967 Studies in Ethnomethodology. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice Hall. Goffman, Erving 1961 Asylums. Garden City, New York: Anchor. Goode, Erich 1990 "Crime Can Be Fun: The Deviant Experience." Contemporary Sociology 19: 5-12. Greenberg, David F. 1977 "Delinquency and the Age Structure of Society." Contemporary Crises 1: 189-223. Hall, Stuart and Tony Jefferson (eds.) 1976 Resistance through Rituals. London: Hutchinson. Hebdige, Dick 1979 Subculture: The Meaning of Style. London: Methuen. Kuhn, Thomas 1970 The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (2nd ed.). Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Luckenbill, David F. and Joel Best 1981 "Careers in Deviance and Respectability: The Analogy's Limitations." Social Problems 29: 197-206. Matza, David 1969 Becoming Deviant. Englewood Cliffs, NJ.: Prentice-Hall. McRobbie, Angela 1989 Zoot Suits and Second-Hand Dresses (ed.). Houndmills, U.K.: Macmillan. 1986 "Postmodernism and Popular Culture." In ICA Documents 4: Postmodernism. London: Institute of Contemporary Arts: 54-58. 1980 "Settling Accounts with Subcultures: A Feminist Critique." Screen Education 34: 37-49. Merton, Robert K. 1968 Social Theory and Social Structure. New York: Free Press. Peterson, Richard A. (ed.) 1990 "Symposium: The Many Facets of Culture." Contemporary Sociology 19: 498-523. Polsky, Ned 1969 Hustlers, Beats and Others. Garden City, New York: Anchor. Schwendinger, Herman and Julia Siegel Schwendinger 1985 Adolescent Subcultures and Delinquency. New York: Praeger. Sholle, David 1990 "Resistance: Pinning Down a Wandering Concept in Cultural Studies Discourse." Journal of Urban and Cultural Studies 1:87-105. Shover, Neal 1983 "The Later Stages of Ordinary Property Offender Careers." Social Problems 31:208-218. Wambaugh, Joseph 1973 The Onion Field. New York: Dell. Zimring, Franklin E. and James Zuehl 1986 "Victim Injury and Death in Urban Robbery: A Chicago Study." Journal of Legal Studies 15:1-40.
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Author:Ferrell, Jeff
Publication:Social Justice
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Sep 22, 1992
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