Banished: The New Social Control In Urban America

Paperback | August 26, 2011

byKatherine Beckett, Steve Herbert

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With urban poverty rising and affordable housing disappearing, the homeless and other "disorderly" people continue to occupy public space in many American cities. Concerned about the alleged ill effects their presence inflicts on property values and public safety, many cities havewholeheartedly embraced "zero-tolerance" or "broken window" policing efforts to clear the streets of unwanted people. Through an almost completely unnoticed set of practices, these people are banned from occupying certain spaces. Once zoned out, they are subject to arrest if they return -effectively banished from public places. Banished is the first exploration of these new tactics that dramatically enhance the power of the police to monitor and arrest thousands of city dwellers. Drawing upon an extensive body of data, the authors chart the rise of banishment in Seattle, a city on the leading edge of this emerging trend,to establish how it works and explore its ramifications. They demonstrate that, although the practice allows police and public officials to appear responsive to concerns about urban disorder, it is a highly questionable policy: it is expensive, does not reduce crime, and does not address theunderlying conditions that generate urban poverty. Moreover, interviews with the banished themselves reveal that exclusion makes their lives and their path to self-sufficiency immeasurably more difficult. At a time when more and more cities and governments in the U.S. and Europe resort to the criminal justice system to solve complex social problems, Banished provides a vital and timely challenge to exclusionary strategies that diminish the life circumstances and rights of those it targets.

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With urban poverty rising and affordable housing disappearing, the homeless and other "disorderly" people continue to occupy public space in many American cities. Concerned about the alleged ill effects their presence inflicts on property values and public safety, many cities havewholeheartedly embraced "zero-tolerance" or "broken win...

Katherine Beckett is Professor in the Department of Sociology and the Law, Societies, and Justice program at the University of Washington. Her research and teaching focus on the politics of crime, punishment, and social control. She is the author of Making Crime Pay and The Politics of Injustice. Steve Herbert is Professor in the Dep...

other books by Katherine Beckett

Format:PaperbackDimensions:216 pages, 6.1 × 9.21 × 0.59 inPublished:August 26, 2011Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199830002

ISBN - 13:9780199830008

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Table of Contents

Introduction1. Banishment's Reemergence2. Toward Banishment: The Transformation of Urban Social Control3. The Social Geographies of Banishment4. Banishment and the Criminal Justice System5. Voices of the Banished6. Banishment Reconsidered