Moby Dick and the crimes of the economy
Ruggiero, Vincenzo (2002) Moby Dick and the crimes of the economy. British Journal of Criminology, 42 (1). pp. 96-108. ISSN 0007-0955
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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjc/42.1.96
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The term ‘crimes of the economy’ incorporates notions of corporate and white‐collar crime and the wide range of illegitimate conducts described as occupational offences. In using this term I refer to the debate around deviant behaviour accompanying economic venture. Such behaviour is viewed by some commentators as episodic and driven by individual pathology, and by others as an inevitable outcome of current principles and dynamics governing the economy. Melville's Moby Dick is an economic epic containing contradictory claims about the legitimacy of accumulation, the exploitation of nature, power and hierarchy. As an allegory of industry Moby Dick describes work conditions, alludes to wages, while simultaneously praising and condemning profit and management. The purpose of this article is to identify the limit beyond which, in Moby Dick, individualism, accumulation and economic enterprise are viewed as dysfunctional. Three different ways of interpreting the crimes of the economy are examined, all detectable in Melville's epic. Respectively, these suggest notions of intrinsic, extrinsic and organizational crime. The analysis of these three notions is conducted against the background of relevant criminological debates on the crimes of the economy.
|Research Areas:||A. Middlesex University Schools and Centres > School of Law > Criminology and Sociology|
|Citations on ISI Web of Science:||0|
|Deposited On:||04 Nov 2008 16:10|
|Last Modified:||20 Feb 2015 16:43|
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