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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 150434 Find in a Library
Title: Police (From Criminology, P 337-357, 1991, Joseph F Sheley, ed.)
Author(s): P K Manning
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 21
Sponsoring Agency: Wadsworth Publishing Co
Belmont, CA 94002
Sale Source: Wadsworth Publishing Co
20 Davis Drive
Belmont, CA 94002
United States of America
Type: Research (Theoretical)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter focuses on such features of Anglo-American policing as functions, mandate, and occupational culture, based on a review of social science research on policing.
Abstract: The author adopts a dramaturgical perspective of policing, as he views the police (both individuals and an organization) as actors who occupy center stage in political and moral dramas. Police are a dramatic entity, one that systematically creates and disseminates favorable images of its action and unfavorable images of its enemies or opponents, such as "criminals." Recent research on policing reveals the many flawed claims of the police. It suggests a need to identify the tensions between police claims about their activities and their daily functions and accomplishments. Two basic concepts are useful for understanding these tensions inherent in policing. They are the police mandate and the occupational culture of the police. The police mandate is the domain of delimited moral, legal, and political authority that shapes police operational principles, strategies, and tactics. The occupational culture of police is shaped by the close association of officers engaged in uncertain and risky work, as well as by the absence of an effective technology and a systematic theory of policing. The mandate and the occupational culture are symbolic issues that integrate the work and bridge the apparent contradictions between police "claims" and "reality."
Main Term(s): Police professionalism
Index Term(s): Police responsibilities; Police subculture; Social network analysis; Social organization
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