Reframing criminal victimization: Finding a place for vulnerability and resilience

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The purpose of this article is to examine the ways in which studies of criminal victimization have contributed to this presumption of human vulnerability, and to examine the potential in understandings of resilience for overcoming this presumption. In order to do this the argument falls into three parts. In the first part I shall consider the different ways in which victimization and vulnerability have been linked together. In the second I shall examine the concept of resilience and its relationship, if any, with vulnerability and victimization. Throughout this discussion I shall draw on feminist informed work as a way of suggesting a differently oriented approach to both of these concepts: presented here as thinking otherwise. In the final and concluding part of this article the implications of contemporary understandings of these concepts will be situated within the broader policy context characterized by Aradau (2004) as informed by a ‘politics of pity’.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-194
Number of pages16
JournalTheoretical Criminology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • pity
  • resilience
  • risk
  • victimization
  • vulnerability

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