Universität KonstanzExzellenzcluster: Kulturelle Grundlagen von Integration

New release: Police in Africa. Edited by Jan Beek, Mirco Göpfert, Olly Owen and Jonny Steinberg

28. July 2017


The Street Level View
London: Hurst Publishers 2017

State police forces in Africa are a curiously neglected subject of study, even within the framework of security issues and African states. This book brings together criminologists, anthropologists, sociologists, historians, political scientists and others who have engaged with police forces across the continent and the publics with whom they interact to provide street-level perspectives from below and inside Africa’s police forces. The contributors consider historical trajectories and particular configurations of police power within wider political systems, then examine the ‘inside view’ of police forces as state institutions – the challenges, preoccupations, professional ethics and self-perceptions of police officers – and finally look at how African police officers go about their work in terms of everyday practices and engagements with the public.

The studies span the continent, from South Africa to Sierra Leone, and illustrate similarities and differences in Anglophone, Francophone and Lusophone states, post-socialist, post-military and post-conflict contexts, and amid both centralisation and devolution of policing powers, democratic transitions and new illiberal regimes, all the while keeping a strong ethnographic focus on police officers and their work. (publisher)

Jan Beek is a researcher at AFRASO, Frankfurt.

Mirco Göpfert is a lecturer in social and cultural anthropology at the University of Konstanz and a former fellow of the Institute for Advanced Study Konstanz (2015).

Olly Owen is research fellow at Oxford University’s Department of International Development.

Jonny Steinberg is Associate Professor in African Criminology at Oxford University.

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