The Steal begins when shoplifting entered the modern record as urbanization and consumerism made London into Europe’s busiest mercantile capital. Crossing the channel to nineteenth-century Paris, Shteir tracks the rise of the department store and the pathologizing of shoplifting as kleptomania. In 1960s America, shoplifting becomes a
symbol of resistance when the publication of Abbie Hoffman’s Steal This Book popularizes shoplifting as an antiestablishment act. Some contemporary analysts see our current epidemic as a response to a culture of hyper-consumerism; others question
whether its upticks can be tied to economic downturns at all. Few provide convincing theories about why it goes up or down.
Just as experts can’t agree on why people shoplift, they can’t agree on how to stop it. Shoplifting has been punished by death, discouraged by shame tactics, and protected against by high-tech surveillance. Shoplifters have been treated by psychoanalysis, medicated with pharmaceuticals, and enforced by law to attend rehabilitation
groups. While a few individuals have abandoned their sticky-fingered habits, shoplifting shows no signs of slowing.
In The Steal, Shteir guides us through a remarkable tour of all things shoplifting—we visit the Woodbury Commons Outlet Mall, where boosters run rampant, watch the surveillance footage from Winona Ryder’s famed shopping trip, and learn the history of antitheft technology. A groundbreaking study, The Steal shows us that shoplifting in
its many guises—crime, disease, protest—is best understood as a reflection of our society, ourselves.
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.90(d)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
Table of Contents
Part 1 Shoplifting in History
1 Theft and Punishment 13
2 Kleptos and Reformers 30
3 Abbie Hoffman Meets the Chinese Handcuffs 46
4 Robin Hoods 2.0 63
Part 2 Dimensions
5 Among Shoplifters 81
6 Hot Products 93
7 Boosters 109
Part 3 Pathology
8 The Thrill of the Steal 125
9 The Rise and Fall of the Shoplifting Celebrity 132
10 The Shoplifting Addict 155
Part 4 Remedies
11 To Catch a Thief 171
12 The Future of LP 185
13 The Disease Is Incurable 196
14 Shame 210
Selected Bibliography 241
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
While it has a lot of sources, overall this come off as a thesis rather than a consumer book. Some of the assertions seem shaky. And there are a few inaccuraces about medication treatments. I remember frim my research that medications are indeed recommended for reducing compulsive shoplifting. Also, the book focused very heavily on individuals with compulsive shoplifting issues. I was hoping for more information on the gangs and street crime side of things.
I have read Ms. Shteir's book "The Steal" and am very disappointed with it from a number of angles--factual and and breadth. First, I am a subject in her book and she she has made no less than 15 errors by my count, including stating that I was in jail--when I was not; that I operate a non-profit business--which I don't; that I am trademarking a therpeutic method--which I'm not; that I had a counseling client who was dissatisfied with me and went to another particular therapist--which didn't happen, she wasn't a client; that the details of a lawsuit were condensed and one-sided and distorted; and that this author doesn't reveal her obvious biases against me and a few others in the book. With this said, I believe the rest of the book's facts and accuracies are in doubt and this author has enjoyed the same negative reviews and shared accuracy concerns in her previous books on strippers. As for the scope and breadth of the book itself, it is all head an no heart; even the chapter on shoplifting as pathology and addictive disorder are written about in a snarky, skeptical, condascending tone. This author does nothing to help others heal from this challenging, shameful problem. There is nothing in this book that gives a clue what the author's true interest is in shoplifting as a topic other than my theory that it is pure opportunism: so little is written about this subject and she hopes to capitalize on this. What a shame!