In Different Voices: A Practice-based Intervention into the Assemblage of Crime

Thomas, Philippa. 2018. In Different Voices: A Practice-based Intervention into the Assemblage of Crime. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

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Abstract or Description

This is a practice-based project which explores and critiques the dominant assemblage of crime, through undertaking experimental empirical research with ex-prisoners, a policeman, a private investigator and criminologists who produce differing and conflictual versions of crime. Sensitive to the ‘enforced narratives’ of criminalised people, I ‘translated’ my empirical data into new forms. The outcome is a collection of short literary fictions and a film, and a written thesis, which explore the politics of showing and telling about crime. Following the ontological premise that our research methods produce rather than represent our objects of investigation, this practice-based project rejects the stable ‘moral construction’ of criminals, victims and criminologists which is implicit in much criminology. Conceptualising crime as a multiplicity or an ‘assemblage’, necessitates disengaging from the pursuit of a ‘hidden reality’ of crime and claims of strong causality, to instead pay close attention to the patterning of present contradictions. The thesis seeks to make an original contribution firstly, in engaging a body of postructuralist philosophy - marginalised within criminology, to rethink some of its central concepts. Secondly my project extends what criminology can be and can look like. Thirdly, it performs a politics of research that aspires to be answerable to those researched. Finally, reading across these compositions produces a more morally nuanced version of crime as a complex multiplicity.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

Identification Number (DOI):


Crime, Practice Research, Collaboration, Assemblage, Deleuze, Fiction, Criminalisation, Composition

Departments, Centres and Research Units:



31 October 2018

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

14 Mar 2019 16:03

Last Modified:

07 Sep 2022 17:14


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