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The Myth of Mob RuleViolent Crime and Democratic Politics$
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Lisa L. Miller

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190228705

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190228705.001.0001

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Mass Publics, Crime, and Democratic Politics

Mass Publics, Crime, and Democratic Politics

(p.1) Chapter 1. Mass Publics, Crime, and Democratic Politics
The Myth of Mob Rule

Lisa L. Miller

Oxford University Press

The chapter provides an overview of the book’s central claims and a framework for empirically assessing the conventional causal narrative about the relationship between crime, mass publics, and politics. The chapter also introduces the key questions of the book: First, does violent crime contribute to the public and political salience of crime? Second, when crime is salient, what policies emerge? Third, how do variations in the institutional design of democratic systems—especially with respect to the accountability and responsiveness of elected government to mass publics—shape the political dynamics of crime and punishment? The research design is also explained and a summary of the chapters is provided.

Keywords:   violence, institutions, policy alternatives, democratic deficit, mob rule

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