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DOMINANT CULTURE INTERRUPTED: Recognition, Resentment and the Politics of Change in an English Police Force

Bethan Loftus
The British Journal of Criminology
Vol. 48, No. 6 (NOVEMBER 2008), pp. 756-777
Published by: Oxford University Press
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23639620
Page Count: 22
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DOMINANT CULTURE INTERRUPTED: Recognition, Resentment and the Politics of Change in an English Police Force
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Abstract

This article draws upon research conducted in an English police force to explore how greater political recognition of cultural and gendered identities has impacted upon the interior culture. Two broad, and opposing, perspectives on the contemporary working environment are presented. The first is characterized by resistance and resentment towards the new diversity terrain, and is articulated principally by white, heterosexual, male officers. A contrasting standpoint, held by female, minority ethnic and gay and lesbian officers, reveals the persistence of an imperious white, heterosexist, male culture. It is argued that the narratives of demise and discontent put forward by the adherents of the former operate to subordinate the spaces of representation for emerging identities and sustain an increasingly endangered culture.

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