Drugs and Crime: Theories and Practices
August 2008, Polity
This thought-provoking book argues that much current thinking
about drugs and crime is simplistic and misguided, because it fails
to take into account the complex social and psychological contexts
that underpin the relationship between drug or alcohol problems and
crime. In clear and accessible language, it reviews existing
explanations of the links between drugs and crime, and assesses the
practical approaches currently being taken to tackle the problems
Key topics covered include:
- The kinds of substance uses society finds acceptable and normal, and the reasons for these categorisations
- What causes offending, drug use and drug problems across the
- Regulating the illicit drugs industry
- Addressing poverty and social exclusion, which are key drivers of drugs and crime.
1. Constructing the Problem of Drugs and Crime
2. What Are Drugs?
3. What Is Crime?
4. Drugs-Crime Connections
5. Drugs, Crime, Adolescence and Youth
6. Drugs, Crime and Contemporary Society
8. Treatment of Drug Dependence
9. The Futures of Drugs and Crime
- Focuses on policy and practice, not just theory, making
practical suggestions towards solving the problems of drugs and
- Will appeal not only to the central criminology market, but
also to those on vocational courses, including various aspects of
social care (drugs counselling, youth and community work, social
- Offers a much more sophisticated and thoughtful presentation of
the links between drugs and crime than other texts.
- Very readable style – pitched at the right level for students and those with little or no background in this field.
Times Higher Education
"This book is refreshing in its transparency ... it is a superb
book and will no doubt be of use to students and academics in this
field, as well as to those who want to pick up a single text to
obtain an overarching view of the subject."
Drugs and Alcohol Today
"One of the first academic texts to provide a realistic and
discursive analysis of the drugs/crime debate ... essential reading
for academics, practitioners and policy-makers who have an interest
in or who work within the area."
Health and Social Care in the Community
"With an innovative combination of scientific and
phenomenological approaches this text is a breath of fresh air for
students and academics alike, providing a neutral basis from which
to develop thinking and research within this highly influential
area of study."
"This excellent book questions a lot of what we believe we
'know' about drugs and crime. Hammersley subjects the basic
concepts of the field to serious and penetrating analysis, managing
to present complex ideas and arguments in a concise and extremely
clear way. It is superbly written, insightful, wide-ranging and
Toby Seddon, University of Manchester
"In this book, Hammersley brings together scientific,
philosophical and phenomenological perspectives in a way that has
never been done before. The result is a compelling text that will
give pause for thought to anyone who felt that the epistemology of
the words 'drugs' and 'crime' was clear enough, and that the
relationship between the two transparently obvious."
John B. Davies, University of Strathclyde