‘Don’t call the police on me, I won’t call them on you’
Self-policing as ethical development in North Manchester
in Realising the city
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This chapter explores the relationship between the experiences of poverty, the penalisation of poverty through state and bureaucratic disciplinary measures, and ethical decision making in everyday life in one of the poorest areas of Britain Harpurhey, Manchester. The struggles to engage with a law-and-order state in Harpurhey involve everyday decision making and strategising as to when and in what vein one might exercise ethical and moral judgment. The chapter addresses the ethical dimensions of social life by exploring the everyday practice of self-policing in Harpurhey as a practice of evaluation and judgment of situations that present momentous ethical dilemmas or moral breakdowns. Self-policing of conflicts and tensions is an ordinary practice in everyday life in Harpurhey. The chapter explores the tensions and ambiguities of ethical development through the ways in which individuals police the behaviours of themselves and each other.

Realising the city

Urban ethnography in Manchester


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