Older people and fear of crime : towards an understanding of the roles of social networks and the impact of the media
This thesis will examine a range of contemporary debates around the possible causes and impact of fear of crime'. It will also critically examine the manner in which the extent of the fear of crime 'problem' has been measured by a range of survey based approaches. Using a range of recent critical literature which has problematised many of the assumptions which underpin the fear of crime debate, this thesis will propose a new approach to understanding the potential impact of fear of crime on the 'everyday life' of individuals. Employing an in-depth ethnography of a group of older adults (one of the sections of the population routinely identified as most 'fearful'), this thesis will argue that organised social networks and a range of other formal and informal activities provide a potentially effective means of minimising the impact of fear of crime on the lives of older adults. It will also argue that the media, often identified as a significant 'cause' of fear of crime, are engaged with in a much more complex fashion by this group than traditional theories which posit a causal link between the media and fear of crime would suggest.