Module details for Criminalisation in the 21st Century


This module will look at ways of interpreting new laws, forms of policing and at new forms of criminalisation.


The aim of this Module is to provide the student with : the opportunity to understand theories of risk and regulation that attempt to explain how and why certain issues are problematised and made criminal.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module the student should be able to:

1.  1. Identify key themes and ideas in the history of crime control.

2.  2. Explain theories of fear and risk.

3.  3. Explain theories regarding crime panics.

4.  4. Identify theories exploring the ‘new elite’ and their growing regulation of everyday life.

5.  5. Explain how the theory of diminished subjectivity relates to new forms of criminalisation including the criminalisation of young people, relationships and language.

Indicative Content

1 Criminalisation

The criminalisation of everything; the development of new laws, forms of surveillance and ways of thinking about crime.

2 Race and class

Moral and amoral panics, past and present, regarding class and race.

3 Tolerance, intolerance and zero tolerance

Changing nature of the elite, of the legal subject and the new criminalising dynamic.

4 Fear, risk and regulation

The importance of policing fear and developing a culture of control.

5 The rise and fall of ‘youth’

Freedom and rebellion; regulation and safety of generation ‘Snowflake’.

Teaching and Learning Work Loads

Teaching and Learning Method Hours
Lecture 24
Tutorial/Seminar 6
Practical Activity 4
Assessment 30
Independent 136
Total 200

Guidance notes

SCQF Level - The Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework provides an indication of the complexity of award qualifications and associated learning and operates on an ascending numeric scale from Levels 1-12 with SCQF Level 10 equating to a Scottish undergraduate Honours degree.

Credit Value – The total value of SCQF credits for the module. 20 credits are the equivalent of 10 ECTS credits. A full-time student should normally register for 60 SCQF credits per semester.


We make every effort to ensure that the information on our website is accurate but it is possible that some changes may occur prior to the academic year of entry. The modules listed in this catalogue are offered subject to availability during academic year 2021/22 , and may be subject to change for future years.