Harm and Disorder in the Urban Space

Social Control, Sense and Sensibility

Nina Persak (Redaktør) ; Anna Di Ronco (Redaktør)

Bringing together an international group of authors, this book addresses the important issues lying at the intersection between urban space, on the one hand, and incivilities and urban harm, on the other. Les mer
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Om boka

Bringing together an international group of authors, this book addresses the important issues lying at the intersection between urban space, on the one hand, and incivilities and urban harm, on the other. Progressive urbanisation not only influences people's living conditions, their well-being and health but may also generate social conflict and consequently fuel disorder and crime.

Rooted in interdisciplinary scholarship, this book considers a range of urban issues, focussing specifically on their sensory, emotive, power and structural dimensions. The visual, audio and olfactory components that offend or harm are inspected, including how urban social control agencies respond to violations of imposed sensory regimes. Emotive dimensions examined include the consideration of people emotions and sensibilities in the perception of incivilities, in the shaping of social control to deviant phenomena, and their role in activating or suppressing people's resistance towards otherwise harmful everyday practices. Power and structural dimensions examine the agents who decide and define what anti-social and harmful is and the wider socio-economic and cultural setting in which urbanites and social control agents operate. Connecting with sensory and affective turns in other disciplines, the book offers an original, distinctive and nuanced approach to understanding the harms, disorder and social control in the city.

An accessible and compelling read, this book will appeal to those engaged with criminology, sociology, human geography, psychology, urban studies, socio-legal studies and all those interested in the relationship between urban space and urban harm.




List of figures and tables

Notes on Contributors


1. Incivilities, harm and social control in urban space

Nina Persak and Anna Di Ronco


Sensory dimensions of incivilities, harm and social control

2. Exploring sound and noise in the urban environment: Tensions between cultural expression and municipal control, health and inequality, police power and resistance

Avi Brisman, Ascension Garcia Ruiz, Bill McClanahan and Nigel South

3. Sounds dangerous: Black music subcultures as victims of state regulation and social control

Lambros Fatsis

4. Offending sights and urban governance: Expectations of city aesthetics and spatial responses to the unsightly

Nina Persak

5. Green criminology perspective on light pollution

Katja Eman

6. When the city smells: Perceptions of decay and physical disorder in Rome

Anna Di Ronco and Nina Persak


Emotion, power and structure in the urban social control setting

7. Emotion and the city: Emotive dimensions of incivilities and of their urban social control

Nina Persak

8. Power at play: The policing of sex work across two European cities

Anna Di Ronco

9. Structural violence, deviance and social control in the urban life and space

Zoran Kanduc


Concluding thoughts

10. The sensory, emotive and power dimensions of incivilities and their social control in the city

Anna Di Ronco and Nina Persak


Om forfatteren

Nina Persak is Scientific Director of the Institute for Criminal-Law Ethics and Criminology in Ljubljana and Visiting Professor of the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. She holds a doctorate in law from University of Ljubljana and an LLM (law) and MPhil (social and developmental psychology) from University of Cambridge. Her research interests lie in the areas of criminalisation, criminal policy, human rights, social control, victimology, socio-legal studies and social psychology.

Anna Di Ronco is Senior Lecturer in Criminology at the Sociology Department of the University of Essex and Deputy Director for its Centre for Criminology. She holds a doctorate in criminology from Ghent University, Belgium. Before starting her PhD, she completed a five-year degree in law at the University of Trento, Italy. Dr Di Ronco's main research interests cover the regulation, representation and enforcement of incivilities in the urban space, and individuals' and groups' resistance to social control in the physical and digital space.