1st Edition

State Crime in the Global Age

ISBN 9781843927037
Published February 24, 2011 by Willan
320 Pages

USD $49.95

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Book Description

State Crime in the Global Age brings together original writings from leading scholars in the field to explore the many ways that the use and abuse of state power results in grave social harms that outweigh, by far, the consequences of ordinary street crime.

The topics covered include the crimes of empire, illegal war, the bombing of civilians, state sanctioned torture, state sacrifice of human lives, and judicial wrongdoing. The book breaks new ground through its examination of the ways globalization has intensified potentials for state crime, as well as bringing novel theoretical understandings of the state to the study of state crime, and exploring strategies for confronting state crime.

This book, while containing much that is of interest to scholars of state crime, is designed to be accessible to students and others who are concerned with the ways individuals, social groups, and whole nations are victimized by the misuse of state power.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction by William J. Chambliss, Raymond Michalowski and Ronald C. Kramer  2. In Search of the State and Crime in State Crime Studies by Raymond Michalowski  3. Toward a Criminology of Empire: Centrality of the Empire Concept in the Study of State Violence by Peter Iadicola  4. Obligatory Sacrifice and Imperial Projects by Frank Pearce  5. Towards a Prospective Criminology of State Crime by David O. Friedrichs  6. Modern Institutionalized Torture by Martha K. Huggins  7. Privatizing International Conflict: War as Corporate Crime by Vincenzo Ruggiero  8. From Guernica to Hiroshima to Baghdad: the Normalization of the State Crime of Terror Bombing Civilians by Ronald C. Kramer  9. A Fake Law: the 'State of Exception' and Lex Mercatoria in Occupied Iraq by David Whyte  10. Dragon Rising: China's Foreign Aid Policy as a Counter Force Against the Criminogenic Conditions of International Finance Institution Policies? by Dawn L. Rothe  11. Framing Innocents: the Wrongly Convicted as Victims of State Harm by Saundra D. Westervelt and Kimberly J. Cook  12. Prosecutorial Misconduct as State Organized Crime? by Lauren N. Lang  13. Harm Reduction Drug Programs and State Crime by Jonathan William Anderson, Tanya Whittle and William J. Chambliss  14. Transitional Justice as Global Industry by Elizabeth Stanley  15. The Reason of State: Theoretical Inquiries and Consequences for the Criminology of State Crime by Athanasios Chouliaras  16. Epilogue: for a Public Criminology of State Crime by William J. Chambliss, Raymond Michalowski and Ronald C. Kramer

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William J. Chambliss is Professor of Sociology at The George Washington State University, USA. His main areas of research are criminology and the sociology of law, and has authored or co-authored numerous titles, including: Social Problems, Law and Society (Rowman and Littlefield, 2001); Power, Politics, and Crime (Westview Press, 2001); Sociology, 2nd edition (Longman, 1997).

Raymond J. Michalowski is Regents' Professor of Criminal Justice at Northern Arizona University, USA. His research and teaching fields encompass criminological theory, international human rights, immigration and border policy, social justice, and corporate, envrionmental and political crime.

Ronald C. Kramer is Professor of Sociology, and Director of the Criminal Justice Program at Western Michigan University. His research specialties within criminology are corporate and state crime, and crime prevention and control strategies, and he is the co-author of Crimes of the American Nuclear State: At Home and Abroad (Northeastern University Press, 1998), and co-editor of State-Corporate Crime: Wrongdoing at the Intersection of Business and Government (Rutgers University Press, 2006).


'Stemming from a 2008 workshop on state crime in the global age held by the International Institute for the Sociology of Law in Spain, this collection of essays addresses the neglected area of state crime, the most destructive of all crimes. While attention to white-collar crime has steadily increased, the study of state crime has languished, limiting itself to the narrow confines of high profile crimes. These essays direct attention to a plethora of crimes of political power, including war, terror bombing of civilians, torture, imperial domination, harmful drug prohibition laws, international financial policy, wrongful convictions, and judicial errors. In addition, other chapters examine the futile attempts by offending governments, international legal bodies, and bystander states to exercise meaningful social control. Three sections frame and theorize state crimes, explore their international and domestic varieties, and address strategies for confronting them, including a very persuasive plea for a public criminology of state crime. The introductory and concluding chapters provide a useful contextual overview and synthesis of the essays. An impressive contribution to the literature on crimes of the powerful. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above.' – G. B. Osborne, University of Alberta in Choice, Jan 2011