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The University of Southampton
Lifelong Learning

Contemporary Crime

Crime, security and criminal justice are highly debated in contemporary societies, attracting much political and media attention.

Contemporary Crime

This module will help you discover the changing nature of crime and the workings of the criminal justice system, by exploring up to date crime concerns through a criminological lens. The module explores the different ways in which crime is responded to, and, as such, you will develop a foundational knowledge of the main perspectives in criminology and how they have been applied to certain areas. You will study issues such as cybercrime, surveillance, punishment and prisons, rioting, the impact of the media, social control and societal reaction to crime.

Typical content of this module includes:

- Cybercrime: Introduction to the dark web

This lesson will introduce you to the dark web. You will learn about what illegal activity can happen online, and see a live demonstration. You will learn about theories on privacy, and the implications this might have for the dark web and society.

- Surveillance society: From Foucault to Facebook

Ideas of surveillance society both online and offline. You will debate the benefits and problems of surveillance. You will also explore police techniques for surveying our online profiles.

- Theories of punishment: The problem with prison

Exploration of he philosophical underpinnings of punishment, looking at concepts including; retributivism, deterrence, incapacitation and rehabilitation. Prisons: does the prison system work?

- Crowd control: Peaceful protests or reckless riots?

You will learn about the changing roles of the police from traditional bobbies to the paramilitary. Comparing the work of Jefferson and Waddington, and looking at examples of contemporary riots, you will evaluate the success of modern policing.

- Legal highs: The media and moral panics

The work of Stanley Cohen and his theory on moral panics. After an exploration of the media’s evaluation of legal highs, a debate will take place evaluating whether Cohen’s theory is applicable to today’s multimedia environment.

- Victim blaming

How doe society treat the victims of crime? You will be introduced to the Beck’s theory of risk society. Should individuals or society manage the risk from crime?


Date: Thursday 8 October 2015
Time: 19.00-21.00
Duration: 6 weeks


£100 (£95 for university staff and students)


Booking is completed through the Online Store, please click here to book your place.

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