Wayward Icelanders Punishment, Boundary Maintenance, and the Creation of Crime
- List Price: $39.95
- Binding: Hardcover
- Publisher: Univ of Wisconsin Pr
- Publish date: 12/01/1999
Wayward Icelanders explores how the threat of crime has affected Icelanders' collective self-identity, producing an ever greater need for social control. Historically Iceland has provided stiff sanctions for the use and abuse of mind-altering substances. Drunk driving has long been systematically punished, and even beer was prohibited for more than seventy years. The rate of conviction for these crimes is high, even in a democracy that prides itself on protecting civil liberties. Even more troubling, however, is the low rate of convictions for rape cases, which suggests that such crimes receive less attention from the state. Drawing on the classic work of Durkheim as well as Kai Erikson's Wayward Puritans, Gunnlaugsson and Galliher demonstrate that an escalating war on crime can threaten freedom even in a small, affluent, and relatively nonviolent nation like Iceland with a long-standing commitment to democracy and individual rights.