Class, Crime, and Social Control in the Contemporary United States

Authored by: Spencer Headworth

The Routledge Handbook of Poverty in the United States

Print publication date:  December  2014
Online publication date:  December  2014

Print ISBN: 9780415673440
eBook ISBN: 9781315755519
Adobe ISBN: 9781317627401

10.4324/9781315755519.ch33

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Abstract

Since the 1980s, regulatory and law enforcement activity in the United States has steadily polarized. Less effort has been devoted to exerting social control on the potential illegal actions of more advantaged people, and a combination of policy decisions and broader changes in political economy has produced a situation in which social control over the economically advantaged is markedly attenuated. Simultaneously, the state, with substantial aid from third-party policing (Desmond and Valdez, 2013), has carried out a far-reaching campaign to increase social control over the actions of less advantaged people, creating in the process an unprecedented punishment regime.

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