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School of History

HST5700 - Crime and Punishment in London

Credits: 15
Semester: 1

Module Convenor: Dr Jacob Smith

Crime has been readily associated with London’s metropolis, from loveable rogues, spivs and celebrity criminals such as Jack Sheppard to panics caused by the ‘London Monster’ and ‘Jack the Ripper’. Criminals have been the focus of both fascination and horror in the city’s past. In tandem, the city developed efforts to control crime, from Beadles and Bobbies to slum clearances and the ultimate sanctions of Tyburn Tree and Newgate Prison. This module analyses thematic aspects of crime and punishment in London, with particular attention to race, gender and queer history. By recovering marginalised voices, we will chart transitions in societal reactions, policing, legislation and culture across the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. Through analysing primary materials and site visits linked to key cases from London’s past, this module provides glimpses into the shifting criminal and judicial landscape of London.

Assessment: Source Analysis 30% Essay 70%
Level: 5

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