Regulating the other side: disorder, exclusion and subcultural closure in the night-time economy.
World Leisure Journal, 51(1) pp. 14–26.
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The aim of this article is to examine the concept of ‘alcohol-related disorder’ in the night-time economy as a reified notion that neglects the broader impact of economic, social and cultural influences on nightlife. The combined impact of gentrification and disorder management have in turn created and reinforced an idea of nightlife that is dominated by the culture of consumption; marginalising the potential for experimental subcultures while creating an apparatus of control and moral disapproval directed at the ‘binge’ drinking, common assault and nuisance. The paper will draw on historical frameworks that demonstrate that the regulation of nightlife has, since the earliest licensing statute, been concerned with consolidating big business and criminalising popular cultural forms, a precedent that continues today. The argument will be made that, rather than focusing on nightlife as an undifferentiated social problem, researchers should look more broadly at the cultural, spatial and regulatory barriers facing a creative and diverse nightlife.
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