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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Economic and Social History

Undergraduate Course: Crime, Policing and Punishment: Great Britain and Ireland since 1800 (ECSH10104)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits40 ECTS Credits20
SummaryThis course examines the experience of criminal justice, policing and systems of punishment from c. 1800 to 2000, focusing on Great Britain and Ireland (located within a broader global context). It centres on three core questions: Who has had access to 'justice' and with what effects? Who has enforced 'law and order' and on whose behalf? What has been the purpose of penal policy and what difference has it made?
Course description This course combines exploration of key debates in criminal justice history and historical criminology (relating to security, crime prevention, access to justice and civil liberties) with indepth analysis of primary source materials (including official documents, court reports, newspaper coverage and cultural representations). By examining a period of 200 years it maps changes in policing, criminal justice and penal/welfare policy - as a set of ideals and as lived experience - in relation to broader political, social, economic and cultural transformations (including (post)colonialism, liberalism, the rise of mass democracy, consumerism and total war). The course considers the intersection of class, gender, race, ethnicity, religion and age in shaping identities, subjectivities, and experiences across time.

As well as developing understanding of the institutions of law, police, criminal justice and punishment in modern Great Britain and Ireland, the course will develop skills in researching and analysing primary sources (including quantitative data, visual imagery and film).

Content note: The study of History inevitably involves the study of difficult topics that we encourage students to approach in a respectful, scholarly, and sensitive manner. Nevertheless, we remain conscious that some students may wish to prepare themselves for the discussion of difficult topics. In particular, the course organiser has outlined that the following topics may be discussed in this course, whether in class or through required or recommended primary and secondary sources: crime, violence, policing, corporal and capital punishment, sexuality. While this list indicates sensitive topics students are likely to encounter, it is not exhaustive because course organisers cannot entirely predict the directions discussions may take in tutorials or seminars, or through the wider reading that students may conduct for the course.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements A pass in 40 credits of third level historical courses or equivalent.

Before enrolling students on this course, Personal Tutors are asked to contact the History Honours Admission Administrator to ensure that a place is available (Tel: 504030).
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  0
Course Start Full Year
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 400 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 44, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 8, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 348 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework, semester 1: 2,000 word short historiographical essay (20%) and 1,500 word primary source analysis (10%)
Coursework, semester 2: 2,000 word short historiographical essay (20%) and 1,500 word primary source analysis (10%)

4,000 word research essay (combining secondary and primary sources) during the exam diet (40%)
Feedback Students will receive feedback on the two short historiographical essays and two primary source analyses and will have the opportunity to discuss the feedback with the Course Organiser during published office hours for this course or by appointment.

Students are expected to discuss the final 4000-word research essay with the Course Organiser at least once prior to submission. Meetings can take place with the Course Organiser during their published office hours or by appointment. Students will also receive feedback on this piece of coursework and will have the opportunity to discuss that feedback further with the Course Organiser.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. demonstrate by way of coursework command of the body of knowledge considered in the course;
  2. demonstrate by way of coursework an ability to read, analyse and reflect critically upon relevant scholarship;
  3. demonstrate by way of coursework an ability to understand, evaluate and utilise a variety of primary source material;
  4. demonstrate by way of coursework the ability to develop and sustain scholarly arguments in oral and written form, by formulating appropriate questions and utilising relevant evidence;
  5. demonstrate independence of mind and initiative; intellectual integrity and maturity; an ability to evaluate the work of others, including peers.
Reading List
David Barrie and Susan Broomhall, Police Courts in Nineteenth-Century Scotland, 2 vols (2014).

David Churchill, Crime Control and Everyday Life in the Victorian City (2017).

Vicky Conway, Policing Twentieth-Century Ireland (2013).

Clive Emsley, Crime, Police, and Penal Policy: European Experiences 1750-1940 (2007)

David Garland, Punishment and Welfare. A History of Penal Strategies (1985).

Stuart Hall et al., Policing the Crisis. Mugging, the State and Law and Order (2013, 1st edn 1979).

Shani D┬┐Cruze and Louise Jackson, Women, Crime and Justice in England since 1660 (2007).

Haia Shpayer-Makov, The Ascent of the Detective: Police Sleuths in Victorian and Edwardian England (2011).

Lizzie Seal, Capital Punishment in Twentieth-Century Britain (2015).

James Whitfield, Unhappy Dialogue: The Metropolitan Police and Black Londoners in Post-War Britain (2004).

Barbara Weinberger, Keeping the Peace?: Policing Strikes in Britain, 1906-26 (1991).

John Carter Wood, Violence and Crime in Nineteenth Century England: The Shadow of our Refinement (2004).
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills - Ability to participate in contemporary as well as historical debates regarding criminal justice, policing and punishment;
- Advanced research skills in searching and analysing digitised primary sources, datasets and databases.
- Skills and abilities in devising, planning and delivering an autonomous piece of research
- Skills and abilities in communication
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserProf Louise Jackson
Tel: (0131 6)50 3837
Course secretary
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