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'Hate crime' and the city$
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Paul Iganski

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781861349408

Published to University Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781861349408.001.0001

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date: 18 August 2017

A victim-centred approach to conceptualising ‘hate crime’

A victim-centred approach to conceptualising ‘hate crime’

Chapter:
(p.1) one A victim-centred approach to conceptualising ‘hate crime’
Source:
'Hate crime' and the city
Author(s):

Paul Iganski

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781861349408.003.0001

Even though the term ‘hate crime’ has caught on in some quarters, it is a rather slippery concept. Varying interpretations have been provided in the scholarly and policy literature, but they do have one thing in common: curiously the word ‘hate’ appears infrequently. Instead, terms such as ‘bias’, ‘prejudice’, ‘difference’ and ‘hostility’ feature prominently. This chapter explores the conceptual disarray of the notion of ‘hate crime’ and explains why and how the concept is to be utilised in the book. It makes a case for the victim's experience to be placed at the centre of the conceptualisation of ‘hate crime’. A victim-centred approach recognises the salience of the particular harms inflicted by ‘hate crimes’ compared with parallel crimes. The experiences of victims also show that, contrary to media depictions of the problem, many incidents of ‘hate crime’ are committed by ‘ordinary’ people in the context of their ‘everyday’ lives.

Keywords:   hate crime, victims, hate, bias, prejudice, hostility, harms

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