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An ethnography of gendered policing

By Louise Westmarland


It has been suggested that male police officers are the purveyors\ud of a unique form of occupational masculinity. Publicised cases of sexual\ud harassment and discrimination. which have come to light in the past few years,\ud tend to support this assumption. Substantial out of court settlements seem to\ud suggest that despite numerous attempts to reform what has been described as\ud police 'canteen culture', a solution appears elusive. In this thesis therefore.\ud evidence will be presented from fieldwork with two northern police forces to\ud explore this supposedly masculinist culture. Various ways of explaining the\ud interrelationships between men, power and identities will be analysed by\ud theorising about 'certain aspects of policework which lend themselves to the\ud maintenance of masculinities. Throughout this discussion the way occupational\ud cultures, within male dominated environments, are bel ieved to perpetuate and\ud reinforce certain ways of 'being a man' , will be considered. In the course of the\ud analysis, status, sexuality, competence and heroism will be used to look at the\ud way masculinist ways of working may have informed our ideas about the\ud police

Year: 1998
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Provided by: Durham e-Theses

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