Book Review: Locating Crime in Context and Place

book_locating_crime.jpg– Perspectives on Regional, Rural and Remote Australia

Editors: Alistair Harkness[1], Bridget Harris[2] and David Baker[3]

Publisher: Federation Press

Reviewer: James McNab

This book is an interesting criminology text which deals with crime in rural and regional Australia. Often, crime statistics, research and information are focussed mainly on urban and suburban areas in Australian society. However, this text shifts the focus from those traditional areas to rural and regional areas.

The book highlights the inequalities and the diversity that rural communities experience, particularly, in relation to crime and access to justice. It is interesting to note, as expressed in the Foreword by Elaine Barclay, that issues concerning access to justice are unlikely to change due to the current service delivery models which have be designed with the emphasis upon urban areas and with little focus on rural populations.

Locating Crime brings together a number of experts in the field of criminology who have added to the veracity of the text through their individual and collective expertise. The book is written and constructed in such a way and language that enables readers of all levels of knowledge and expertise to be able to understand and interpret the various issues and concepts that the book discusses.

Helpfully, the book has been divided into three parts which are: Locating Crime, Criminal Justice Issues and Responses and Practitioner Perspectives. It is then broken down to 17 short topics which are well explored. In relation to Practitioner Perspectives, this part is particularly informative from a lawyer’s point of view. As the name suggests, this part was written by various practitioners from the various facets of the criminal justice system such as police, lawyers, policy makers and a judicial officer. These personal perspectives add further support to the whole book.

The book would not only be a valuable contribution to the library of practitioners. It is likely to be of great benefit for anybody with an interest in criminology including policy makers, researchers and students.

In short, Locating Crime is an interesting and enlightening read.

At a price of $64.99 from the publisher, it represents good value for money.

James McNab



[1] Lectures and researches in criminal justice at Federation University, He is also a former member of the Victorian Legislative Assembly.

[2] Lectures and researches in criminology at the University of New England

[3] Is the program leader of criminal justice at Federation University.