Crime, Culture and the Media


Why are newspapers and television programmes filled with stories about crime and criminals? Is their portrayal of crime accurate? How do the media transform our attitudes to crime? Is fear of crime, for example, really created by the media?

The relationships between crime and the media have long been the subject of intense debate. From the earliest days of the printing press to the explosion of cyberspace chat rooms, there have been persistent...
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Why are newspapers and television programmes filled with stories about crime and criminals? Is their portrayal of crime accurate? How do the media transform our attitudes to crime? Is fear of crime, for example, really created by the media?

The relationships between crime and the media have long been the subject of intense debate. From the earliest days of the printing press to the explosion of cyberspace chat rooms, there have been persistent concerns about the harmful criminogenic effects of the media. At the same time, the media are fascinated with crime - on the news, in films and on television there are countless stories about crime, both real and imagined.

In this innovative and accessible new book, Eamonn Carrabine carefully untangles these debates, and grapples with the powerful dynamics of fear and desire that underlie our obsession with crime. Chapter-by-chapter the book introduces the different ways in which relationships between crime and the media have been understood, including classic debates about the media's effects, news production, and moral panics, as well as more cutting-edge studies of the representation of crime in the contemporary media.

Combining empirical research findings with the latest theoretical developments, the book will appeal to advanced undergraduates and graduate students across the social sciences, especially those taking courses in criminology and media studies.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This book has great insight into the world of crime and the media,and disseminates this knowledge in an easy-to-read form that wouldappeal to students interested in this topic everywhere."
Times Higher Education

"I always feel that I am in safe hands with Eamonn Carrabine,whose last book was a paradigm. His new book on crime, culture andthe media is no less assured and very ably weaves classic debatesabout the media's effects, representations of crime and agencies ofthe criminal justice system, news production, and moral panic withCarrabine's personal and lively take on why our news is filled withcrime stories and how the media might impact on our view of crimeand criminals."
Howard Journal

"This book is not just another bite at the ‘crime andmedia' cherry, instead it is a refreshing and sophisticated look atthis hotly contested area of debate within criminology and mediastudies. Tackling this topic with undoubted finesse, Carrabineadopts an interdisciplinary approach that draws upon a solid wealthof existing literature from a variety of fields including fi lmstudies, sociology and criminology along with history andpsychology. The result is an accessible text that lays a foundationof knowledge by tackling old and existing debates by updating themwith the latest research and providing a useful engagement withpertinent material for the study of crime and media to students atboth undergraduate and postgraduate level."
Crime, Media, Culture

"Crime, Culture and the Media has the great virtue ofcombining breadth and brevity. It covers a remarkable range ofperspectives and debates that should interest both the initiatedcriminological scholar and general readers eager to learn moreabout how crime has been covered across an array of media, past andpresent ... a laudable effort and a great boon for faculty andstudents interested in exploring culture, crime, and media in alltheir overlapping complexities."
Contemporary Sociology

"Carrabine's book is, without doubt, an impressive achievement.He simultaneously manages to keep one foot firmly incriminology’s 'traditional' debates about crime and mediawhile casting those debates into question by drawing upon a richarray of sociological, philosophical and psychoanalytic resources.It is rare indeed that a book about 'crime and the media' givesserious consideration to the ideas and insights drawn from thelikes of Aristotle, Todorov, Levi-Strauss, Levinas, Lacan, Deleuzeand Freud. That students (and indeed teachers and writers!) ofcriminology might be drawn to engage with such intellectualresources through an encounter with this book makes it doublyvaluable."
Theoretical Criminology

"Concise but comprehensive in its review of a vast literature,it is well organized and well written, and it raises a number ofimportant issues and alarms that researchers and students of mediaand crime should find compelling."
Cultural Studies

"This book brings to bear a sophisticated synthesis of cultural,social and philosophical theories and empirical research in theanalysis of representations of crime in the mass media and popularculture. It covers a wide range of issues, examining the impact ofmedia images of crime on fear and public sentiment, the history ofnews and fictional crime narratives, and their production. It willbe a useful text for students, and also offers many penetratinginsights to practitioners and academics."
Robert Reiner, London School of Economics and PoliticalScience

"An informed and refreshing look again at the interface betweencrime and the media. Carrabine's sociological focus on how crimestories circulate in social life makes it an invaluable guide tostudents and offers new insights to those who know the fieldwell."
Ian Loader, University of Oxford

"Carrabine gives us a thorough review of the scholarlyliterature on the media and crime. If you seek a comprehensivesurvey of British theoretical and empirical work on crime and themedia - one that draws on film and literary theory, history andphilosophy, as well as psychology and sociology - this is thebook."
Nicole Rafter, Northeastern University,Massachusetts

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745634654
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 8/26/2008
  • Series: PCSS-Polity Crime and Society Series
  • Edition description: New
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 300
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Eamonn Carrabine is Lecturer in Sociology at Essex University.

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Table of Contents


Part I: Audiences.

1. Media Effects.

2. Fearing Crime.

3. Making Meaning.

Part II: Representations.

4. The Print Revolution.

5. Entertaining the Nation.

6. Telling Stories.

Part III: Industries.

7. Producing the News.

8. Revisiting Moral Panics.


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