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High Policing and Low Policing: Remarks about the Policing of Political Activities

Jean-Paul Brodeur
Social Problems
Vol. 30, No. 5, Thematic Issue on Justice (Jun., 1983), pp. 507-520
DOI: 10.2307/800268
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/800268
Page Count: 14
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High Policing and Low Policing: Remarks about the Policing of Political Activities
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Abstract

Policing political activities is usually regarded as deviant police action. The deviance approach focuses on police abuse, which is deemed to be secretive and to confuse legitimate dissent with political delinquency, such as terrorism. I take issue with the deviance approach and attempt to replace it by distinguishing between high policing and low policing models of police action. Political policing is then seen as a core feature of high policing instead of merely being a suspicious peripheral aspect of the police apparatus. I also argue that mainly through technological change, western police forces are increasingly operating under the high policing model.

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