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versão impressa ISSN 1517-4522


LEAL, José Manuel Pires. The feeling of insecurity in the discourse on crime. Sociologias [online]. 2010, n.23, pp.394-427. ISSN 1517-4522.

This article analyzes the representation of the feeling of insecurity in the face of crime, based on the comparative study of two communities in Portugal, with different models of sociability - concelho de Mértola and linha de Sintra; concelho de Mértola, eroded by a continuous demographic desertification, and linha de Sintra in increasing urban and demographic expansion. The paper interprets the interviews as a result of the influence of the signs and mechanisms that define modernity, and the socializing effect of the great paradigms that characterize life in contemporary societies. Normativity and rupture in face of the status quo appear constantly throughout the article. There is no feeling of insecurity. The individuals have many ways to express the apprehension that results from the intersection of variables such as: the dominant type of solidarity in the community or place of residence; residential proximity to places marked by exclusion and socio-cultural and economic asymmetries; and the experience of victimization, either direct or emotionally close. It appears that these variables influence the practices and representations that individuals create to define the agents and their motivation for deviant behavior, as well as the efficacy of the mechanisms of social control.

Palavras-chave : Crime; Delinquency; Feeling of insecurity; Urban; Rural.

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