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The Idea of Police by Carl B. Klockars


The Idea of Police by Carl B. Klockars

The Idea of Police is one of the core texts in its series. Written by a leading criminologist in a highly readable, fluid style, it is intended as an introductory text on police. Klockars defines the police in terms of their right to use coercive force. He then describes the comparative evolution of the British and US police forces, providing readers with the historical background to the current state of the police. The moral conflicts and issues of discretion that policemen must cope with are explored and, lastly, he looks at two questions: What makes a good police officer? And what type of organizational, political, and social environment encourages good policework?

About the Author

Carl B. Klockars is a Professor of Criminal Justice and Sociology at the University of Delaware. A criminologist of more than thirty years experience, Prof. Klockars is the author of five books, more than fifty scholarly articles, and numerous professional papers. He has served as nationally-elected vice-president of the Police Section of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences and was three times elected by the members of the American Society of Criminology to serve on its Executive Board. He has also served as a lobbyist for the Maryland Sheriffs Association and as an expert witness in cases alleging police misconduct. Prof. Klockars has been a pioneer in building collaborative research relationships between police and academics. He has written extensively on professional crime, criminological theory, the moral dilemmas of policing and police use of force. With colleagues he has recently completed a study with police agencies in Charleston, S.C., Charlotte-Mecklenburg, N.C., and St. Petersburg, FL that seeks to understand the mechanisms through which police agencies may create organizational environments that enhance and encourage integrity.

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Book Info

Publication date

28th March 1985


Carl B. Klockars

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SAGE Publications Inc


160 pages


Social issues & processes
Social welfare & social services



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