Non-Fiction Books:

Policing Compassion

Begging, Law and Power in Public Spaces



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Policing Compassion by Joe Hermer
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The encounter between those begging and those passing by in public spaces has become one of the most controversial issues in the politics and policing of urban life. In this book, Hermer examines how begging regulation plays a cental role in organizing how we feel responsible for one another in late capitalist society. Based in the historical insight that modern begging law has had at its core a concern with the compassionate impulses of the public, Hermer develops the concept of the "gift encounter" to understand begging as a profound social phenomenon that is intricately tied to the exercise of political power. Drawing on a range of eclectic empirical sources, he examines how criminal begging is governed through specialized police operations and "diverted giving" programmes, as well as the way in which official and legitimate begging such as charity collections, Big Issue selling and busking are ordered as vital aspects of the gift encounter landscape which the public negotiates.

Author Biography

Joe Hermer is an Assistant Professor of Sociology and Criminology at the University of Toronto.
Release date Australia
August 6th, 2020
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
Hart Publishing
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