The Civilization of Crime: Violence in Town and Country since the Middle Ages
edited by Eric A Johnson and Eric H. Monkkonen
contributions by James A Sharpe, Pieter Spierenburg, Jan Sundin, Barbara Weinberger, Esther Cohen, Herman Diederiks, Florike Egmond, Eric A Johnson, Michele Mancino, Eric H. Monkkonen and Eva Österberg
University of Illinois Press, 1996
Paper: 978-0-252-06546-0 | Cloth: 978-0-252-02242-5
Library of Congress Classification HV6937.A18 1996
Dewey Decimal Classification 364.94

Along with most of the rest
        of Western culture, has crime itself become more "civilized"?
        This book exposes as myths the beliefs that society has become more violent
        than it has been in the past and that violence is more likely to occur
        in cities than in rural areas.
      The product of years of study
        by scholars from North America and Europe, The Civilization of Crime
        shows that, however violent some large cities may be now, both rural and
        urban communities in Sweden, Holland, England, and other countries were
        far more violent during the late Middle Ages than any cities are today.
      Contributors show that the
        dramatic change is due, in part, to the fact that violence was often tolerated
        or even accepted as a form of dispute settlement in village-dominated
        premodern society. Interpersonal violence declined in the seventeenth
        and eighteenth centuries, as dispute resolution was taken over by courts
        and other state institutions and the church became increasingly intolerant
        of it.
      The book also challenges a
        number of other historical-sociological theories, among them that contemporary
        organized crime is new, and addresses continuing debate about the meaning
        and usefulness of crime statistics.
      CONTRIBUTORS: Esther Cohen,
        Herman Diederiks, Florike Egmond, Eric A. Johnson, Michele Mancino, Eric
        H. Monkkonen, Eva Österberg, James A. Sharpe, Pieter Spierenburg,
        Jan Sundin, Barbara Weinberger

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