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The Provenance of Fear


Jonathan Jackson


London School of Economics & Political Science - Department of Methodology

Stephen Farrall


University of Sheffield

Emily Gray


University of Sheffield

November 1, 2006

Experience & Expression in the Fear of Crime Working Paper No. 2

Abstract:     
As a topic of academic research, policy study and public debate, the fear of crime has been with us since the 1960s. This is not to suggest that anxieties about crime had never surfaced prior to this point. Rather, from the 1960s and 1970s we have witnessed a massive growth in the efforts put into understanding and controlling such fears. Where these fears came from, why they emerged at all, and an understanding of the processes associated with their emergence is the topic of this, our second, Working Paper. This article is constructed in the following fashion. In the first part we summarise the development of the fear of crime as a concept and as an object of criminological research. Inevitably this section draws heavily from our previous writings on this subject (most notably Jackson's Images of Crime essay). Following this, in the second, shorter section of our essay, we outline some of the explanations which have been posited for the seemingly inexorable rise of the fear of crime as a topic for and of research. This takes us into uncertain terrain and the pitfalls are numerous; the second part of our essay remains a speculative piece. However the speculation serves as the basis for some intriguing debates about 'where' all of this fear came from, and 'who' or 'what' delivered it to us.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 21

Keywords: Fear of Crime, Politics, Research, Policy, Criminology

JEL Classification: I18, I31, I38

working papers series


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Date posted: September 6, 2007 ; Last revised: March 8, 2013

Suggested Citation

Jackson, Jonathan and Farrall, Stephen and Gray, Emily, The Provenance of Fear (November 1, 2006). Experience & Expression in the Fear of Crime Working Paper No. 2. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1012364 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1012364

Contact Information

Jonathan Jackson
London School of Economics & Political Science - Department of Methodology ( email )
Houghton Street
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom
+0044-207-955-7652 (Phone)
Stephen Farrall
University of Sheffield ( email )
Crookesmoor Building, Conduit Road
Sheffield S10 1FL
United Kingdom
Emily Gray (Contact Author)
University of Sheffield ( email )
Bartolome House
Winter Street
Sheffield, S3 7ND
United Kingdom
44 114 222 6832 (Phone)
HOME PAGE: http://www.shef.ac.uk/law/staff/academic/egray
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