Young People, Antisocial Behavior and Unemployment: Toward a Trans-Disciplinary Analysis of Criminalization

Fergusson, Ross (2022). Young People, Antisocial Behavior and Unemployment: Toward a Trans-Disciplinary Analysis of Criminalization. Critical Criminology (Early Access).

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10612-021-09600-1

Abstract

This article considers the diverse use of the concept of criminalization in criminological and socio-legal analyses, the meanings attached to it, and the differentiated modes and manifestations of the processes of criminalization in the United Kingdom. It draws together the contributions of both disciplines (criminology and socio-legal studies) to extend understanding and theorization of the concept of criminalization, and it applies them to antisocial behavior legislation and unemployment policy concerning young people. The article identifies three distinctive modes of criminalization—illegalizing, impelling and imputing—through which the criminalization of targeted young people is realized. The article argues that criminological assessments and theorizations of criminalization and assessments developed in socio-legal studies have largely developed independently. It considers the prospects for a trans-disciplinary approach to criminalization in theory and in practice that would attempt to build on complementarities between the critiques developed by both disciplines, and it identifies possibilities for synthesizing their insights.

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