Regulating the night: race, culture and exclusion in the making of the night-time economy

Talbot, Deborah (2007). Regulating the night: race, culture and exclusion in the making of the night-time economy. Re-materialising cultural geography. Aldershot, UK: Ashgate.



The promotion of night-time economies in town centres across Britain has sparked new fears about disorder, violence and binge-drinking. However, there has been little consideration of the social and cultural benefits of a diverse urban nightlife. This timely work examines the processes that have led to a mainstreaming of subcultural expression at night, and the impact of legislation aimed at providing the police and councils with new powers to manage and contain the 'social problem' of contemporary nightlife.

Based on an ethnographic study of a London locality, the book examines the unwitting consequences of local decision-making, and the contradictory struggles that ensued. Utilizing the concept of the 'outsider area' as a space that stands outside of conventional norms, and where cultural innovation and transgression can occur, it explores the social consequences of losing contact with the 'other'.

Contents: Nightlife and outsider areas in an era of spatial and subcultural closure: recasting the politics of popular culture; Negotiating research into the regulation of 'outsider' areas: The growth, criminalisation and decline of unregulated night spaces in Southview; Urban regeneration, conflict and change; From nightlife to the 'night-time economy'; Licensing and the loss of political and moral authority; Licensing, policing and the informal mechanics of exclusion; Conclusion; Bibliography; Index.

Reviews: 'Regulating the Night is a wonderful contribution to the study of that subcultural space called 'nightlife', especially as it flourishes in the contemporary inner city. Deborah Talbot has produced a book bristling with ideas and insights (and indeed attitude) about the de-regulation and re-regulation of this space, using her own extensive interviews with the people who count – the residents, the club owners, the police officers, the councillors, the officials, the regenerators, the clubbers, the dealers and the drinkers.�
John Fitzpatrick, University of Kent, UK

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