Policing A Class Society


An in-depth critical analysis of how ruling elites use the police institution in order to control communities.

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The Experience of American Cities, 1865-1915 (2nd edition)

By Sidney L. Harring
Haymarket Books

Police are popularly understood as the “thin blue line” that “serves and protects” us from violence and crime in the pursuit of justice.

In Policing a Class Society, Sidney L. Harring provides an essential corrective to the ideas that police have always been around, that they are a force for deterring crime, or that they have an interest in the pursuit of justice.

Looking at the growth of the urban police force around the turn of the 20th century, Harring argues that the police protected the interests of manufacturers, working almost as hired guns. Rather than fighting crime, the historical role of police was to control the leisure activity of the developing working-class and maintain the existing order of capitalist relationships.

Additional information

Weight 16 oz
Dimensions 9 × 6 × 0.75 in



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