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A murderous ‘underclass’? : press reporting of sexually motivated murder

Grover, Christopher and Soothill, Keith (1996) A murderous ‘underclass’? : press reporting of sexually motivated murder. The Sociological Review, 44 (3). pp. 398-415. ISSN 0038-0261

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The ‘underclass’ is widely held by commentators of the Right to be responsible for a host of social problems, including violent crime. This paper shows how in the reporting of sexually motivated murder in a sample of nine British newspapers for one complete year (1992), the image constructed is one where unemployed and other marginalised men are portrayed as the main perpetrators of sexual violence. This, the authors argue, hampers our understanding of sexual violence, for it suggests that it is only men of a ‘low’ socio-economic background who are a potential threat to women and children. It is also suggested that the ‘symbolic environment’ of the press reporting of sexual murder provides a context in which a more authoritarian benefit regime and greater control of poor communities can be spuriously justified.

Item Type: Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title: The Sociological Review
Subjects: ?? h1 ??
Departments: Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences > Applied Social Science
ID Code: 59064
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 09 Oct 2012 16:12
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 11 Apr 2018 00:44
Identification Number:

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