Policing, Punishment and Control

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  • Policing, punishment and control
    • Social Control
      • Formal and Informal
        • Formal is based upon organisations that exist solely or partly to enforce order such as the police
        • Informal based upon a range of sanctions such as negative comments, looks and exculsions
      • Feeley and Simon
        • Actuarialism, the change from controlling deviant behavior to controlling the threat potentially deviant people - the poor, young and homeless
          • Agree with Cohen, this has been because of the rise of privatization, who attempt to get crime at the source
        • They also believe in disciplining, a new form of control were companies peacefully control you, such as Disney workers (who's daily lives are controlled)
      • Approaches to understanding social control
        • Functionalists: see the criminal system as operating to look after the interests of society as a whole. Without control and punishment, society would collapse into a state of anomie
        • Marxist: argue that the criminal justice system operates for the benefit of the ruling class. The law and the police are agents of the ruling class to control the rest
      • Changes in social control
        • Penetration
          • That the law and the importance of conformity is no longer a law that is just passed, they are integrated into our society in schools and work
        • Size and density
          • To control millions of people, more formal agencies have been made to control us, MI5, CIA, etc
        • Identity
          • There has been growth in more subtle forms of control
            • CCTV, tagging and controlling peoples time has meant that there is an ever-growing invisible net of control, also growth of private agencies controlling people
        • Put forward by Cohen
    • Punishment
      • Durkheim
        • The basis and the form of punishment has changed over time
          • In mechanistic societies (traditional) punishment is based on retribution, demonstrating to others through harsh capital punishment
          • In organic societies (modern) it has shifted away from public punishment to imprisonment - more restitutive
      • Foucault
        • The panoptician effect (where people always think they're being watched) is a form of control as it creates the illusion of constant watching
        • Echoed Durkheim's work
        • The fear of God is put into those in mechanistic socities
    • The Police
      • Conflict policing
        • Police can be best seen as occupying forceful roles which are imposed onto ethnic minorities and the working-class
          • Lea and Young describe this as military-style policing who use large numbers and hi-tech survllience to control
      • Cultural
        • Police officers are mostly white and male and thus a "canteen culture has been created
        • Skolnick: police are impressionable and the law means they are indoctrinated a conservative-style of thiinking
          • As many PO are working-class and male that culture is reflected in the police, drinking, masculinity and heterosexuality
          • They are also trained to be suspicious and often label certain people, which will affect who they arrest

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