Textbook on Criminology (7th edition)

ISBN : 9780199592708

Katherine S. Williams
680 Pages
171 x 244 mm
Pub date
Mar 2012
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Textbook on Criminology offers an engaging and wide-ranging account of crime and criminology, addressing the theoretical, practical, and political aspects of the subject. The clarity of approach makes it an ideal text for students wishing to gain a firm grasp of the fundamental issues, together with an appreciation of some of the complexities surrounding the study of criminology. The author deals with the major questions of criminology, such as 'how do you define a crime?', 'why do people become criminals?', and 'how should we deal with criminals?'. Each question is studied from an objective and academic viewpoint and encourages greater social, political, and philosophical awareness of crime, criminals, and society's response to them. The text also maps out the changes in crime control and society's expectations in relation to crime control. For example, students will find the insightful chapter on terrorism and state violence to be of particular interest and relevance; established criminological theories are applied, and the author addresses issues such as political responses to terrorism and the reasons why people become terrorists. The text is ideal both for students studying towards a degree in criminology, and students opting to study criminology as part of another subject, such as law.


1. What is criminological theory?
2. Definitions, terminology and the criminal process
3. Public conceptions and misconceptions of crime
4. The extent of crime: a comparison of official and unofficial calculations
5. Victims, survivors, and victimology
6. Influences of physical factors and genetics on criminality
7. Influences of biochemical factors and of the central and autonomic nervous systems on criminality
8. Psychological theories of criminality
9. Mental disorder (psychopathology) and criminality
10. Intelligence and learning
11. The sociology of criminality
12. Anomie, strain and juvenile subculture
13. Control theories
14. Labelling, phenomenology and ethnomethodology
15. Critical criminology: conflict, radical and cultural criminologies
16. Criminology and realism
17. Positivist explanations of female criminality
18. Feminist theories
19. Terrorism and State violence
20. Governance, risk and globalisation theories

About the author: 

Katherine S. Williams is Lecturer in Law at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. Prior to this she taught at the University of Liverpool for nine years. Her main teaching areas are criminology, criminal justice, human rights and welfare law, and social policy. As well as her work on criminology she has recently published in the areas of criminal justice, computer law, and child sexual abuse.

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