Across America today gated communities sprawl out from urban centers, employers enforce mandatory drug testing, and schools screen students with metal detectors. How and when did our everyday world become dominated by fear, every citizen treated as a potential criminal? In this startlingly original work, Jonathan Simon traces this pattern back to the 1960s when declining confidence in government policies sent political leaders searching for new models of governance. The War on Crime offered a ready solution to their problem: politicians redefined the ideal citizen as a crime victim, one whose vulnerabilities opened the door to overweening government intervention. By the 1980s, this transformation of government had spilled over into the institutions that affect daily life. Soon our schools, our families, our workplaces, and our communities were being governed through crime. This powerful work concludes with a call for passive citizens to become engaged partners in the management of risk and the treatment of social ills. Only by coming together to produce security, can we free ourselves from a logic of domination by others, and from the fear that currently rules our everyday life.
About the Author
Jonathan Simon is Associate Dean of Jurisprudence and Social Policy and Professor of Law at the University of California, Berkeley. Co-editor of the journal Punishment & Society, he is also the author of Poor Discipline: Parole and the Social Control of the Underclass, 1890-1990 and co-editor of two other volumes.
Table of Contents
Introduction Crime and American Governance 3
1 Power, Authority, and Criminal Law 13
2 "Prosecutor-in-Chief" Executive Authority and the War on Crime 33
3 We the Victims Fearing Crime and Making Law 75
4 Judgment and Distrust The Jurisprudence of Crime and the Decline of Judicial Governance 111
5 Project Exile Race, the War on Crime, and Mass Imprisonment 141
6 Crime Families Governing Domestic Relations Through Crime 177
7 Safe Schools Reforming Education Through Crime 207
8 Penalty Box Crime, Victimization, and Punishment in the Deregulated Workplace 233
9 Wars of Governance From Cancer to Crime to Terror 259
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