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Criminologists Say...: An Analysis of UK National Press Coverage of Criminology and Criminologists and a Contribution to the Debate on Public Criminology

NCJ Number
Howard Journal of Criminal Justice Volume: 46 Issue: 5 Dated: December 2007 Pages: 459-475
Nic Groombridge
Date Published
December 2007
17 pages
This paper examines the United Kingdom national press coverage of criminology and criminologists for the 12 months up to April 2005 in an attempt to illustrate the argument that criminology needs to engage with the media.
The terms criminology and criminologist are deployed within media discourse, but often in an incidental or trivial way, rather than on the subject of crime or criminal justice. The point of this research is not to castigate the media for its failure to understand crime and criminal justice, but to see how criminology itself is pictured. It is argued for the appropriateness of a new public criminology and suggests some ways forward. This article illustrates how sociology is viewed in the press. It then explores how criminology is viewed in the press before going on to discuss how criminology might be conducted in public given this and the debates around public sociology. It is intended to spark a debate around these issues and to encourage a greater engagement by criminologists with the media. This paper, in part, replicates work done on sociology and sociologists in the previous year by Gaber (2005). Both serious contributions by criminologists and mentions of criminology, favorable and unfavorable, are analyzed to provoke discussion within criminology and criminal justice studies about how the discipline is viewed by the print media. Notes, and references


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