SHE Level 4
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code MHM224398
Module Leader Julia Zauner
School Glasgow School for Business and Society
Subject Sociology
  • B (January start)

Summary of Content

Drawing upon a broad range of literature from various fields, including criminology, sociology, film and media studies, literary studies, and history, this module takes an interdisciplinary approach and thus seeks to challenge the 'theoretical parochialism' (Greer, 2010: 2) of much crime and media research. This module takes media to include fictional representations of crime and deviance, therefore film, literature, and Internet material, as well as news media, will be examined. Beginning with a critical discussion of theoretical perspectives on crime and media, the module presents a comparative study of various approaches, orthodox and otherwise, to media analysis. Next, the module describes the historical trajectory of forms of media, their close association with crime and deviance, and the mediated construction of the meanings of crime and justice. The next section of the module examines contemporary issues such as terrorism, the culture of fear, and moral panics, and their representation by news media, with particular focus on post-9/11 journalism and critical essays (Hauerwas and Lentricchia, 2003; 8ei9eek, 2002, 2008) . Then, the question of whether television representations of crime, policing, and justice reflect public concerns about moral decline will be addressed. This section of the module concludes with an analysis of the reconfiguration of mediated representations of sex and sexualities, focusing on the relationship between the Internet and pornography. The final section of the module focuses on the contributions of literature and film to the imaginative construction of crime and policing, and concludes with a discussion of the gendered criminal in film, from the 1940s to the present day.


Introduction and overview of the module -360b7 Theories of media 1: radical, liberal pluralist, and conservative perspectives b7 Theories of media 2: cultural criminological approaches b7 Media effects: studies and critiques b7 Public media: from pamphleteers to blogospheres -360b7 Terror, the culture of fear, and panic b7 Television: a sedative for public anxiety? b7 Cyber-deviance: sex, pornography, and the Internet -360b7 Criminal auto/biographies b7 Crime in literature: detectives and defectives, from Sherlock Holmes to Fight Club b7 Reading gender through media: the femme fatale in film noir Revision

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module, students should have developed a detailed understanding of and critical approach to:" The role of media in constructing public perception/understanding of crime, deviance, and justiceAdditionally, students should be able to:" Demonstrate awareness of the historical trajectory of media and its relationship with crime and deviance" Compare and contrast different theoretical approaches to the study of media" Evaluate the role of media in representing and constructing crime and deviance" Apply criminological/sociological concepts and theories to analyse various forms of mediaPRME" Reflexive analyses of global media sources, and awareness of the impact of media representations of crime and deviance contribute to a socially just pedagogy" The multi-perspectival approach to media and crime aids in the development of cognitive, social and ethical competencies

Teaching / Learning Strategy

There will be a central series of lectures supported by student-centred seminars/tutorials, directed learning, and practical exercises. Students will be encouraged to raise and discuss, individually and in groups, topics, relevant to the module, of their choice.

Indicative Reading

-567 Books and articles: Altheide, D. (2002) Creating Fear: News and the Construction of Crisis . Carrabine, E. (2008) Crime, Culture and the Media . Carter, C. (2003) Violence and the Media . Carter, C. and Steiner, L. eds (2004) Critical Readings: Media and Gender . Curran, J. and Gurevitch, M. eds (2005) Mass Media and Society . Ferrell, J. et al eds (2004) Cultural Criminology Unleashed . Gauntlett, D. (2005) Moving Experiences: Media Effects and Beyond . Greer, C. ed. (2009) Crime and Media: A Reader . Hauerwas, S. and Lentricchia, F. eds (2003) Dissent from the Homeland: Essays after September 11 . Horsley, L. (2009) The Noir Thriller . Kaplan, E. A. ed. (2007) Women in Film Noir . Kidd-Hewitt, D. and Osborne, R. eds (1995) Crime and the Media: The Post-modern Spectacle . Mason, P. (2006) Captured by the Media: Prison Discourse in Popular Culture . Rowbotham, J. (2005) Criminal Conversations: Victorian Crimes, Social Panic, and Moral Outrage . Ruggiero, V. (2003) Crime in Literature: Sociology of Deviance and Fiction . Sharrett, C. (1999) Mythologies of Violence in Postmodern Media . Surette, R. (2007) Media, Crime, and Criminal Justice: Images, Realities, and Policies . Williams, L. (1999) Hard Core: Power, Pleasure, and the Frenzy of the Visible . Williams, L. ed. (2004) Porn Studies . 8ei9eek, S. (2002) Welcome to the Desert of the Real . 8ei9eek, S. (2008) Violence: Six Sideways Reflections . -567 Online sources: Journal: Crime, Media, Culture

Transferrable Skills

By the end of this module students will have gained competence in the following key areas: -360b7 Critical interpretative skills. b7 Written and oral skills, developed by essay writing, informal (non-assessed) presentations, and by individual and group tutorial discussions. Enhanced research skills.

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Lectures (FT) 12.00
Independent Learning (FT) 140.00
Assessment (FT) 36.00
Tutorials (FT) 12.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Exam (Exams Office) 2.00 50.00 35% 2hours
Coursework 1 n/a 50.00 35% essay