Introduction: thinking realistically about crime prevention

Authored by: Nick Tilley

Handbook of Crime Prevention and Community Safety

Print publication date:  September  2005
Online publication date:  May  2013

Print ISBN: 9781843921479
eBook ISBN: 9781843926146
Adobe ISBN: 9781134014637


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I began to write this introduction on 4 February 2005. The Guardian newspaper had a page-six item with the headline: ‘The simple truth: get complex.’ It described the efforts of two Danish artists to hand out 1,000 pieces of art in London, each bearing the message: ‘Keep life complicated.’ These artists had already staged a similar event in Copenhagen and were planning another in New York. In all cases they were trying to repudiate a ‘Simple Living’ crusade that had evidently begun in California, but then spread into Europe. The artists, Jan Egesborg and Claus Rohland, argued that people found the simple-living message stressful. It failed to match their experience. At the same time the impetus to simplify life, to look at what is fundamental and to cut to the heart of what really matters is, of course, a strong one that is reflected in the influence of the Californian crusade.

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