​Who is the victim of crime? Paying homage to the work of Richard Quinney

Author(s) Walklate, Sandra
Title Who is the victim of crime? Paying homage to the work of Richard Quinney
Source Crime Media Culture; August 2012; Vol. 8; No 2; p 173-184
Date 2012
Document type Journal article
Summary In this article the author examines the question, who is the victim of crime, posed by Richard Quinney in 1972 and the responses from victimology since that time. Three narratives on criminal victimisation are discussed: the academic, the cultural and the political. In the academic narrative positivist victimology is seen to be the most influential and here the victim is a victim of conventional crime such as burglary that occurs in public and now there is recognition of the violence experienced at home, such as domestic violence or sexual assault, as a result of the feminist movement. Features of the cultural narrative include the rise of the compensation culture, human rights, and the vicarious attention given to the suffering of others. The political narrative is multilayered with a label of victim being made at personal levels and at group levels, often depending on how strong the advocates are. The author discusses how the three narratives demonstrate a shift from expecting victims to utilise their coping skills and the politics of pity playing a stronger role.
Keywords Victimology; Quinney; victim; positivist victimology.
Topic Victimisation