This module brings together academic research and theorising on victims of crime prompting a critical perspective on professional practice. The emergence of the idea of the ‘victim of crime’ in the modern period will be examined and the resulting, contested, definition and scope of the idea of ‘crime victim’ explored. The challenges of measuring and predicting victimisation will be addressed as well as the contested concepts of’ repeat victimisation’, ‘fear of crime’ and ‘vulnerability’.
The module content will address the variety of approaches to victimology as well as to the wider issues of the ‘place’ of victims of crime in wider approaches to criminology. The module will explore in some detail the impact of feminist thought on the development of victimology as well as more recent work in the study of crime and criminal justice in the late-modern world that throws into question efforts to impose boundaries on the ideas of ‘victims’ and ‘crime’.
In this unit we shall:
· Develop an advanced understanding of the concept of victimology, particularly as it applies to the status of the victim throughout the criminal justice process.
· Describe and critically evaluate theories of and approaches to crime victimisation.
· Develop advanced understanding of the theory and practical application of victimisation data in relation to the development of crime prevention/reduction strategies.
· Explore the impact of feminist thought on academic and activist thinking on crime victimisation.
· Develop an advanced understanding of policy and service delivery in relation to criminal victimisation and in relation to challenges posed by wider legal and criminological developments.
On completion of this unit students will be able to:
· Define, describe and critically assess the theory and practical application of victimology and criminal victimisation in criminal justice contexts.
· Critically appreciate, evaluate the impact of gendered approaches to criminal victimisation both theoretically and relation to research and the criminal justice process.
· Describe the impact of crime victimisation theories on the general working practices of various agencies within the criminal justice process.
· Critically assess the challenges inherent in measuring victimisation including repeat victimisation and its application to crime reduction strategies.
· Critically assess the challenges presented by the assessment of vulnerability to criminal victimisation.
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· Appreciate the complexity of attempting comparative analysis in the field of criminal victimisation.