Conclusion: Youth, Crime and ‘ordinary life’ Through an Ecological Lens
The aim of this book has been to illustrate and illuminate the complex relationship between crime and young people’s ‘ordinary’ everyday lives. It has drawn upon the stories and insights of a group of young people living in disadvantaged communities in the United Kingdom who, for a variety of reasons, find themselves identified as a ‘problem’ and defined officially as being at ‘risk’ of becoming ‘career criminals’. In trying to ‘make sense’ of young people’s relationship with crime we have proposed an alternative model to that of developmental criminology: one that listens and gives value to the voices of young people and explores the ‘ecological nexus’ between youth and crime, drawing out the ‘nested’ qualities of this relationship within a range of settings and fields in which young people’s everyday lives are lived. This political ecological approach draws upon the work of Urie Bronfenbrenner (1977, 1979, 1986) and Pierre Bourdieu (1977, 1979, 1990) and recognises that the social world (and our behaviour within it) is shaped and influenced by a wide range of political, social, cultural and economic factors. We have, then, proposed that analysis of the interplay between the ecological contexts of social action around crime embedded within social life requires a different approach.
KeywordsYoung People Cultural Capital Political Ecology Career Criminal Youth Crime
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