Discuss criminological theory. What is it, and why is it important?
Two campaigns that preceded the Scotland’s 2014 independence referendum made appeals to the Scottish nation and an assumption was made that the Scottish community shared a unique identity. The ‘Better Together’ campaign argued for Scotland to remain in the UK, unlike the ‘Yes Scotland’ campaign which argued for an independent Scottish state (Hewson et al. 2015). Reicher and Hopkins (2001) described these campaigns as ‘action oriented’ as they look to pull the Scottish nation together, albeit not in the same direction. ‘Better Together’ looks to create Scotland as a diverse nation, on the other hand, ‘Yes Scotland’ portrays Scotland as an independent nation thus leading to the suggestion by Reicher and Hopkins that perhaps national identity is also future oriented and demonstrates that it can be manipulated and constructed in a way that benefits politics. Politicians will do what they can to bring a nation to their way of thinking to help achieve their goals. Contrasted with Scotland’s 2014 independence referendum is the study by Augoustinos and De Garis (2012) on ‘political rhetoric’ cited in (Hewson et al. 2015). They studied the speeches made by Barack Obama in his pre-election campaign (2007-2008). Obama’s identity came under scrutiny by many as he was either seen as ‘too black’ or ‘not black enough’ to represent America, as he is of a mixed race he was deemed an unconventional candidate. A speech by Obama in 2008 was analysed by Augoustinos and De Garis and it was clear to see that Obama wanted to implement a national identity for everyone in America. The principles of justice, equality and freedom were the basis for this identity, Obama wanted to unite America as one regardless of class, gender and race. Hewson et al. (2015, p. 261) stated that national identity can be seen as being constructed on the basis of distinctiveness of ‘others’. Migrants, for example, are commonly viewed as a threat to nations by taking ‘our’ jobs, increasing unemployment and sponging off the government as well as bringing about cultural changes to society. However, on a positive note, migrants can also enrich society with cultural changes and contribute to the economy. ‘Othering’ is the process in which migrants are viewed as different and inferior (Hewson et al. 2015). Lea and Lynn (2003) studied how asylum seekers are portrayed in letters to the editors of eight major British newspapers. Asylum seekers were placed into one of two groups ‘Genuine’ and ‘Bogus’, those who made a genuine case for asylum came under ‘Genuine’ and those who came under ‘Bogus’ were economic immigrants simply using asylum to gain permission to reside in the country. Maloney (2007) drew similar conclusions in her study in Australia where 115 participants were asked to describe th>GET ANSWER