The Mark of Criminality

The Mark of Criminality

Author: Bryan J. McCann

Publisher: University of Alabama Press

ISBN: 9780817319489

Category: Language Arts & Disciplines

Page: 208

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The Mark of Criminality illustrates the ways that the “war on crime” became conjoined—aesthetically, politically, and rhetorically—with the emergence of gangsta rap as a lucrative and deeply controversial subgenre of hip-hop. In The Mark of Criminality: Rhetoric, Race, and Gangsta Rap in the War-on-Crime Era, Bryan J. McCann argues that gangsta rap should be viewed as more than a damaging reinforcement of an era’s worst racial stereotypes. Rather, he positions the works of key gangsta rap artists, as well as the controversies their work produced, squarely within the law-and-order politics and popular culture of the 1980s and 1990s to reveal a profoundly complex period in American history when the meanings of crime and criminality were incredibly unstable. At the center of this era—when politicians sought to prove their “tough-on-crime” credentials—was the mark of criminality, a set of discourses that labeled members of predominantly poor, urban, and minority communities as threats to the social order. Through their use of the mark of criminality, public figures implemented extremely harsh penal polices that have helped make the United States the world’s leading jailer of its adult population. At the same time when politicians like Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, and Bill Clinton and television shows such as COPS and America’s Most Wanted perpetuated images of gang and drug-filled ghettos, gangsta rap burst out of the hip-hop nation, emanating mainly from the predominantly black neighborhoods of South Central Los Angeles. Groups like NWA and solo artists (including Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, and Tupac Shakur) became millionaires by marketing the very discourses political and cultural leaders used to justify their war on crime. For these artists, the mark of criminality was a source of power, credibility, and revenue. By understanding gangsta rap as a potent, if deeply imperfect, enactment of the mark of criminality, we can better understand how crime is always a site of struggle over meaning. Furthermore, by underscoring the nimble rhetorical character of criminality, we can learn lessons that may inform efforts to challenge our nation’s failed policies of mass incarceration.

Contesting the Mark of Criminality

Contesting the Mark of Criminality

Author: Bryan John McCann

Publisher:

ISBN: OCLC:457050374

Category:

Page: 574

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This dissertation situates the emergence of gangsta rap from 1988-1997 within the historical trajectory of the American criminal justice system and the mass incarceration of African Americans. Specifically, it examines how the genre enacted the mark of criminality as a gesture of resistance in a period of sustained moral panic surrounding race and criminality in the United States. The mark of criminality refers to a regime of signifiers inscribed upon African American bodies that imagines black subjects as fundamental threats to social order. Drawing upon the theoretical resources of historical materialism and cultural studies, the project locates the mark of criminality within the social structures of capitalism, arguing that hegemonic fantasies of racialized criminality protect oppressive and exploitative social relations. The project concludes that while gangsta rap has many significant limitations associated with violence, misogyny, and commercialism, it nonetheless represents a salient expression of resistance that can inform broader interventions against the American prisons system. A number of questions guide this project. Chief among them are the following: In what ways does the criminal justice system operate as a site of rhetorical invention and hegemonic struggle? To what extent does gangsta rap enable and disable rhetorical and political agency? To what extent does it enable and disable interracial political practice? What are the implications of gangsta rap for a gendered politics of criminality? Three case studies demonstrate how specific gangsta rap artists inverted the mark of criminality toward the constitution of affirmative and resistant fantasies of black criminality. While the work of these artists, I argue, was significantly limited in its emancipatory potential, it nonetheless offered important insights into the contingency of race and crime in America. The project also considers how other rhetors responded to gangsta discourse, frequently toward the end of supporting hegemonic notions of race and criminality. The dissertation concludes that criminality functions as a vibrant site of rhetorical invention and resistance provided it is articulated to broader movements for social justice. While the often-problematic discourses of gangsta rap do not constitute politically progressive rhetorics in their own rights, they provide resources for the articulation of righteous indignation and utopian desires capable of challenging the prison-industrial complex.

Stain Removal

Stain Removal

Author: J. Reid Miller

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780190648305

Category: Philosophy

Page: 240

View: 360

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Martin Luther King, Jr. famously expressed his dream that his children would "one day not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character." In his vision, a person's ethical qualities would be understood in spite of his or her body rather than through it. In general, we think that a person's actions should not be judged according to their physical features, such as race. In fact, we see evaluations based on a subject's race or other bodily traits as illegitimate. But Stain Removal argues that our perception of a person's actions always entails judgments of the body. It therefore challenges modern moral theory's premise that a subject's deeds and not its bodily traits count as primary objects of evaluation. Drawing on modern and pre-modern accounts of how ethical knowledge originates, from the Biblical story of Ham, to Socrates, Immanuel Kant, Alain Locke, Frantz Fanon, Langston Hughes, Onora O'Neill, and Louis Althusser, the book suggests that our recognition of both a person and that person's deeds demands an evaluative context. From this it proposes that all perception is "evaluative perception." Through the metaphor of the stain, J. Reid Miller traces the long history of thought suggesting that embodiments like race can and do signify ethical qualities. He argues that these qualities do not "attach" to subjects from the outside-like a stain on innocent and unraced beings-but are instead what allow us to see people as distinct ethical individuals. The objective of ethics, he shows, is not to determine whether race is good or bad but to illustrate how our "unique" personal traits emerge through our multiple relations to others. The consequence is that, contrary to King's vision, it is only through judgments of "skin" and other bodily features that the ethical "content" of subjects can be recognized.

Crime and Criminality

Crime and Criminality

Author: Sandie Taylor

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781317497578

Category: Social Science

Page: 800

View: 277

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The question of ‘why’ and ‘how’ certain individuals are drawn towards behaving in a way that contravenes the ‘Law of the Land’ is not an easy one to address. Researchers from various different fields have nevertheless attempted to develop theoretical explanations for the existence of different types of crime and why some individuals commit such acts. Crime and Criminality draws on criminology, sociology, psychology and neuroscience to offer a balanced perspective of crime, the criminal and criminality. Coverage includes: a comprehensive discussion of theoretical approaches to criminal behaviour, including biological, social and ‘rational choice’ approaches; an analysis of legal and social definitions of crime and how these definitions influence the way specific behaviours are labelled as criminal; an examination of different types of crime and criminals, from delinquents to ‘psychopaths’ and sex offenders; an exploration of different ways in which crime is predicted, including risk assessment and offender profiling and an overview of investigative techniques. Addressing a broad range of topics and offering a synthesis of competing theoretical explanations of criminality, this book is essential reading for students taking courses in criminology, criminal psychology, criminal behaviour, forensic psychology and psychological criminology.

After Prison

After Prison

Author: Rose Ricciardelli

Publisher: Wilfrid Laurier Univ. Press

ISBN: 9781771123181

Category: Social Science

Page: 320

View: 517

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Employment for former prisoners is a critical pathway toward reintegration into society and is central to the processes of desistance from crime. Nevertheless, the economic climate in Western countries has aggravated the ability of former prisoners and people with criminal records to find gainful employment. After Prison opens with a former prisoner’s story of reintegration employment experiences. Next, relying on a combination of research interviews, quantitative data, and literature, contributors present an international comparative review of Canada’s evolving criminal record legislation; the promotive features of employment; the complex constraints and stigma former prisoners encounter as they seek employment; and the individual and societal benefits of assisting former prisoners attain “gainful” employment. A main theme throughout is the interrelationship between employment and other central conditions necessary for safety and sustenance. This book offers suggestions for criminal record policy amendments and new reintegration practices that would assist individuals in the search for employment. Using the evidence and research findings of practitioners and scholars in social work, criminology and law, psychology, and other related fields, the contributors concentrate on strategies that will reduce the stigma of having been in prison; foster supportive relationships between social and legal agencies and prisons and parole systems; and encourage individually tailored resources and training following release of individuals.

Émile Durkheim and the Collective Consciousness of Society

Émile Durkheim and the Collective Consciousness of Society

Author: Kenneth Smith

Publisher: Anthem Press

ISBN: 9781783082384

Category: Social Science

Page: 276

View: 134

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This volume sets out to explore the use of Émile Durkheim’s concept of the ‘collective consciousness of society’, and represents the first ever book-length treatment of this underexplored topic. Operating from both a criminological and sociological perspective, Kenneth Smith argues that Durkheim’s original concept must be sensitively revised and suitably updated for its real relevance to come to the fore. Major adjustments to Durkheim’s concept of the collective consciousness include Smith’s compelling arguments that the model does not apply to everyone equally, and that Durkheim’s concept does not in any way rely on what might be called the disciplinary functions of society.

Crime Prevention

Crime Prevention

Author: Daniel Gilling

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781135364519

Category: Social Science

Page: 240

View: 955

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First published in 1997. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.

Crime and Criminality

Crime and Criminality

Author: Ehor Boyanowsky

Publisher: University of Toronto Press

ISBN: 9781487523893

Category: Psychology

Page: 336

View: 800

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Unprecedented in the way it draws on many different theories to explain crime and violent phenomena, this highly readable book is sure to fascinate readers.

Gender and Criminality in Bangla Crime Narratives

Gender and Criminality in Bangla Crime Narratives

Author: Shampa Roy

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 9781137515988

Category: Social Science

Page: 247

View: 889

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This book examines diverse literary writings in Bangla related to crime in late nineteenth and early twentieth century colonial Bengal, with a timely focus on gender. It analyses crime-centred fiction and non-fiction in the region to see how actual or imagined crimes related to women were shaped and fashioned into images and narratives for contemporary genteel readers. The writings have been examined within a social-historical context where gender was a fiercely contested terrain for publicly fought debates on law, sexual relations, reform, and identity as moulded by culture, class, and caste. Both canonized literary writings (like those of Bankim Chatterji) as well as non-canonical, popular writings (of writers who have not received sufficient critical attention) are scrutinised in order to examine how criminal offences featuring women (as both victims and offenders) have been narrated in early manifestations of the genre of crime writing in Bangla. An empowered and thought-provoking study, this book will be of special interest to scholars of criminology and social justice, literature, and gender.

The Mark of the Beast

The Mark of the Beast

Author: Mark S. Roberts

Publisher: Purdue University Press

ISBN: 1557534748

Category: Philosophy

Page: 217

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"The Mark of the Beast" historically and critically examines the dire affects of the process of animalization on both humans and animals. Roberts provides a general account of the theoretical division between humans and animals begun largely in the work of Aristotle and continued in that of Descartes and Kant. Following the philosophical provenance of the idea of ?animality, ? Roberts explores the practical and "scientific" uses of this idea, focusing largely on what Stephen J. Gould terms the "biodeterministic tradition" by evaluating the primarily ninteenth century theories of atavism, craniology, recapitulation, and so on, while also exploring the use of medical and psychological techniques of animalization

The Mark of Shame

The Mark of Shame

Author: Stephen P. Hinshaw

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0198042159

Category: Psychology

Page: 352

View: 308

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Millions of people and their families are affected by mental illness; it causes untold pain and severely impairs their ability to function in the world. In recent years, we have begun to understand and develop a range of effective treatments for mental illness. Even with this shift from moralistic views to those emphasizing the biological and genetic origins of mental illness, punitive treatment and outright rejection remain strong. Public attitudes toward mental illness are still more negative than they were half a century ago, and the majority of those afflicted either do not receive or cannot afford adequate care. As a result of all of these troubling facts, applying the term "stigma" to mental illness is particularly appropriate because stigma conveys the mark of shame borne by those in any highly devalued group. Mental illness tops the list of stigmatized conditions in current society, generating the kinds of stereotypes, fear, and rejection that are reminiscent of longstanding attitudes toward leprosy. Mental disorders threaten stability and order, and media coverage exacerbates this situation by equating mental illness with violence. As a result, stigma is rampant, spurring family silence, discriminatory laws, and social isolation. The pain of mental illness is searing enough, but adding the layer of stigma affects personal well being, economic productivity, and public health, fueling a vicious cycle of lowered expectations, deep shame, and hopelessness. In this groundbreaking book, Stephen Hinshaw examines the longstanding tendency to stigmatize those with mental illness. He also provides practical strategies for overcoming this serious problem, including enlightened social policies that encourage, rather than discourage, contact with those afflicted, media coverage emphasizing their underlying humanity, family education, and responsive treatment. The Mark of Shame is a deeply inspiring and passionate work that is realistic and filled with hope. It combines personal accounts with information from social and evolutionary psychology, sociology, and public policy to provide messages that are essential for anyone afflicted or familiar with mental illness.