Volume 2 of this two-volume companion study into the administration, experience, impact and representation of summary justice in Scotland explores the role of police courts in moulding cultural ideas, social behaviours and urban environments in the nineteenth century. Whereas Volume 1, subtitled Magistrates, Media and the Masses, analysed the establishment, development and practice of police courts, Volume 2, subtitled Boundaries, Behaviours and Bodies, examines, through themed case studies, how these civic and judicial institutions shaped conceptual, spatial, temporal and commercial boundaries by regulating every-day activities, pastimes and cultures. As with Volume 1, Boundaries, Behaviours and Bodies is attentive to the relationship between magistrates, the police, the media and the wider community, but here the main focus of analysis is on the role and impact of the police courts, through their practice, on cultural ideas, social behaviours and environments in the nineteenth-century city. By intertwining social, cultural, institutional and criminological analyses, this volume examines police courts’ external impact through the matters they treated, considering how concepts such as childhood and juvenile behaviour, violence and its victims, poverty, migration, health and disease, and the regulation of leisure and trade, were assessed and ultimately affected by judicial practice.
'These two volumes constitute a heavyweight companion study in every sense of the term - except, that is, for the clear, well-argued and accessible text. Carefully researched, based on an impressive range of archival sources, and rooted in detailed knowledge of existing scholarship, Police Courts makes a valuable and important contribution to a hitherto under-researched aspect of criminal justice history. Written by scholars who, intellectually, form a formidable duo, this exhaustive examination of Scottish police courts, their activities and their personnel puts down a bench mark that will be essential reading for historians of England and Scotland who will need carefully to reflect on the study’s arguments and findings and follow up with new research.' Clive Emsley, Open University, UK
'Overall these books are a fantastic achievement. They present a sophisticated and nuanced picture of the role of the lower courts and the part they played not only in implementing the nineteenth century revolution in criminal justice but in making the modern city. They balance an attention to detail with an awareness of broader historiographical and theoretical issues. They are a model for future studies in this area.' Lindsay Farmer in Law, Crime and History (2016)