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Courses: Politics | Deviance | Political Sociology | Social Justice |
This book illuminates the importance of studying deviance and diversity as politics, and how we might transcend the current vulgar debate over freedom fighters versus terrorists. A Political Analysis of Deviance continues to challenge the “freak” of the week approach to the study of deviance, and challenges scholars to resist the role of being zoo-keepers with the “deviants” as the “objects” captured in the zoo. As we encounter more terrorism, war and unending conflicts over what is deviant, it may be time again to listen to the powerful voices in this book. They explore issues of intent and consequence, shifting moral boundaries via differences in time and space, and factors such as moral entrepreneurs, social movements, organizations, the state, and globalization. In the new foreword, Pat Lauderdale raises questions about the current usefulness of the approach and examines political life and its relationship to the study of deviance that often are ignored or suffocated before they become public.
“This is an important collection of papers, in some ways even more vital now than when they were first written. The study of "deviant" forms of behavior is the study of the political and the ideological, and the scholars whose work has been gathered here understand that truth as well as anyone anywhere.”
–Kai Erikson Department of Sociology Yale University
“Understanding the power relationships involved in the construction of crime and law is a crucially important area. This superb book is at the cutting edge of research into this intriguing and puzzling field. Presenting a thoughtful, meticulous, reliable and fresh look at politics and deviance Pat Lauderdale's excellent and thoughtful book provides a pillar of persuasive scholarship for any researcher wishing to delve into this fascinating area and understand how power and politics play a part in the construction of deviance.”
–Nachman Ben-Yehuda Hebrew University
"In spite of some political attempts to declare the sociology of deviance dead, it is widely taught in colleges and universities across the nation. Pat Lauderdale’s Political Analysis of Deviance is among the classics in the field, demonstrating a resilience rooted in its highlighting of the process whereby deviance is politically defined, claimed, constructed, and condemned. In this new edition Professor Lauderdale incorporates new forms of deviance, such as terrorism, into his classic mix of cool analysis of the politicization of offensive behaviors to illustrate the enduring trends, regardless of the form deviance takes."
–Stuart Henry School of Urban and Public Affairs, University of Texas at Arlington
"The US-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, prisoners indefinitely detained at Guantanamo, the reemergence of lone wolf terrorism—have introduced worldwide audiences to nothing less than a modern American morality play. This book takes us to the crossroads of deviance and politics where we are given superb insights into the moral boundaries that distinguish public virtue from naked mendacity. Few topics are timelier or more important."
–Mark S. Hamm, author of Terrorism as Crime: From Oklahoma City to Al-Qaeda and Beyond
"With the courage of intellectual conviction, Pat Lauderdale’s A Political Analysis of Deviance investigates the dynamics of power and conflict by which deviance is defined. Importantly, Lauderdale and the book’s contributors expose the politics of deviance not only amidst the making of law and regulation, but in the courtroom, the sports arena, and the city street. In this sense the book stands as an essential resource for anyone interested in the contours of contemporary deviance and its control. But more than that, it stands as an essential work of social investigation, affirming as it does a fundamental sociological insight: that to explore deviant behavior is also, and inevitably, to explore the social order that demarcates the deviant from the non-deviant."
–Jeff Ferrell, author of Tearing Down the Streets