Beyond criminology: Taking harm seriously

Copson, Lynne (2021). Beyond criminology: Taking harm seriously. In: Gordon, Faith and Newman, Daniel eds. Leading Works in Law and Social Justice. London: Routledge, pp. 169–190.



In Chapter 12 Lynne Copson draws on the leading work, Beyond Criminology: Taking Harm Seriously, edited by Paddy Hillyard, Christina Pantazis, Steve Tombs, and Dave Gordon, which was the first text to introduce what would come to be known as ‘zemiology’ or ‘a social harm perspective’, as a ‘replacement discourse’ to that of crime. The chapter argues that in the 17 years since its publication, it is clear that Beyond Criminology has played an important role in inspiring analyses that move away from crime and criminal justice responses and towards social harm and social justice measures. By adopting a different starting point outside the concept of crime, there has emerged more inter- and/or transdisciplinary dialogue around a wider range of social problems. This has allowed parallels and associations to be drawn between a wide range of phenomena, from flowers to fashion, from politics to prisons.

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