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It’s a Mosher Just Been Banged for No Reason’: Assessing the Victimisation of Goths and the Boundaries of Hate Crime

Garland, J (2010) It’s a Mosher Just Been Banged for No Reason’: Assessing the Victimisation of Goths and the Boundaries of Hate Crime International Review of Victimology, 17 (2). pp. 159-177.

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The murder of Sophie Lancaster in August 2007 in Lancashire, England, made national headlines, both for the brutal nature of the assault upon her and also because she had been attacked solely due to her ‘alternative’, gothic appearance. At the trial of her teenage assailants the judge surprisingly referred to the incident as a ‘hate crime’, apparently viewing the targeting of her ‘difference’ as being the key defining factor of what constitutes such a crime. This article will examine the validity of this assumption by analysing the characteristics of the assault upon Lancaster and also the nature, extent and impact of the harassment of goths and ‘alternatives’ more generally. It will assess the degree to which this type of victimisation is similar to that experienced by minority communities, such as gay, transgender, minority ethnic and disabled, who are routinely categorised, by both academics and practitioners, as being hate crime victim groups. The article will conclude that although there are inherent problems with classifying attacks upon goths as hate crimes, it may nonetheless be time to view the targeting of difference as being the most important aspect of what is, and is not, considered a hate crime.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > Department of Sociology
Authors :
Date : 2010
Identification Number : 10.1177/026975801001700202
Uncontrolled Keywords : hate crime, goth subculture, victimisation, difference, targeted violence
Related URLs :
Additional Information : Published in International Review of Victimology, 17 (2), 2010. Copyright 2010 Sage Publications.
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 10 Jul 2013 17:04
Last Modified : 23 Sep 2013 20:08

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