Attempt at definitionAfter racial riots shook the American big cities in 1968, the Sociologue Afro-American Kenneth Clark declared before the Kerner commission joined together at the request of President Lyndon Baines Johnson: “ I read this report/ratio on the riots of Chicago in 1919 and it is as if I read the Commission Report of investigation into the disorders with Harlem in 1935, the Commission Report of investigation into those of 1943, the Commission Report McCone on the riots of Watts. I must sincerely say to you, Members of the Commission, which one would believe in Alice in the country of the wonders , with same film that us eternally are passed by again: even analyzes, same recommendations, even inaction ”.
This already dated intervention highlights three great characteristics of what one calls the “ urban violences ”:
- Their relative seniority, in any case with the the United States of America.
- Their sporadic irruption at periods and in different cities.
- the incapacity connects public authorities to include/understand them, then if required to fight them.
If the first characteristic should help the Historien with the définirs, they appear imperceptible taking into consideration the two others, their eminently eruptive character and the supposed mistakes of the public authorities seeking to circumscribe them finally prevent from determining the problem precisely. To circumvent the difficulty of delimitation of the object and to avoid having to take into account long time in their analyzes, the authors consequently generally have recourse to a limited definition of the phenomenon which corresponds only to its most recent form, that which it took these last decades, even these last years. Thus it of Sophie Body-Gendrot is, which affirms in particular that the term “ urban violence ” indicates “ slightly organized actions of young people acting collectively against goods and people, in general related to the institutions, on disqualified or disadvantaged territories ”. It is definition that us can to retain while knowing well that it is restrictive, and that it tends for example to naturalize heavy variables weighing on the actors who act violently, in particular them Jeunesse, a variable which only is little questioned by the specialists. It is however an effective definition in the sense that one cannot either, for reasons of concision, to take any violent action perpetrated within an urban framework for a “ urban violence ”, even if this slip is sometimes necessary.
The city like place of interiorization and repression of violence
The interiorization of violence by the urbanizationViolence in general recovers a diversity of behaviors or acts individual, interpersonal or even collectives. From one time like from one company to another, as recalled by Yves Michaud, the forms of violence employed and their intensity varied much. One will speak for example today about a “road violence” or a “Road insecurity”. Moreover, our sensitivity to these forms of violence itself changed, always according to Yves Michaud, the extension of the incrimination in the criminal Law. In the same movement, the criminal law thinks more and more violence like not being more several factors such as the Scolarisation, the diffusion of the codes of court and, finally, the Urbanisation. The city is thus here famous at the origin of the interiorization of its violence by the Man: the evolution within masses imposed more reserve to him in its acts.
The repression of violence to the margin of the citiesFollowing Norbert Elias, the historian Jean-Claude Chesnais underlined in his turn the trend fall of violence in the modern societies by studying however only properly physical violence. But from other theorists came to contradict this idea following work that the American historian Tedd Gurr realized in the years 1970 - 1980, and who interpret violence in term of deprivation: it would develop when the rise in the aspirations of the individuals is not accompanied more than one comparable improvement of their Living conditions. It is what would have occurred in the Western companies starting from the the Thirties, decade during which Ted Gurr observes a complete trend reversal, i.e. from now on the durable increase in violence Homicide, Criminalité, flight S or Délinquance, according to a curve in J. the thesis of Ted Gurr is sometimes evoked under the name of “ theory of the curve in J ” for this reason. In France, according to Sebastian Roché, this continuous rise is observed starting from the medium of the the Fifties. It is consequently independent, according to him, of the economic context : “ the delinquency in particular increases during the years of rebuilding and Prospérité. Since the middle of the Eighties, it tends to stagnate, and this in spite of the increase in the Chômage of long life and the phenomena of Exclusion ”. Even if this diagram itself is disputed, it is necessary at the head to keep these observations for the study of urban violences themselves, from which the evolution is different.
Previously, we should recall that one of the principles of organization of the city was always thought like the repression of violence out of its walls, in opposition to the Campagne around, a campaign considered as the place of all the Jacquerie S and of all the Pillage S, a campaign where the movement of pacification was very late, which explains the massive Rural migration besides towards “ the gleam liberator of anonymity ” of the cities, according to the expression of the historian Elisabeth Claverie. It should well be seen however that this anonymity is ambivalent because it is also the condition of existence of all kinds of Trafic S which can finally contribute to the violence of the city.
At all events, like points out it for example Michel Foucault in Surveiller and to punish , the great industrial complexes European were built in edge of the cities to prevent the working revolts. In the same way, in the United States, the Campus were built out them cities to move away the threat coed… Also, when violence starts a curve in J Après-guerre, consciously or not, the authorities will decide to build the great units where to place the populations most stripped in Banlieue. However, in the Unconscious collective, the suburbs is par excellence and since always the place in margin, that which would accommodate the “marginal ”, the “ Barbares ”, in other words the “Zulu ”, to take again a suitable term, the “ wild stocks ”, to take again a word of Jean-Pierre Chevènement, the “ rabble ” to take again Nicolas Sarkozy: as of the Middle Ages, the suburbs are this space which is at a Lieue of the city and where cease to apply the round of applause, i.e. the capacity seigneurial, this space beyond which one is banished, one does not form any more part of the City, and thus of the Civilization… urban violences “ ” are thus makes generally only violences périurbaines of them, in any case if one excludes from the definition the violences perpetrated within the Manifestation S which logically assert as for them a visibility in the middle same of the Center-ville: violence is found then in the middle same of the city owing to the fact that the latter is the heart of the political power to cut down. For the Political , which is tempted to think violence like contagious, this setting with the variation could finally be happy.
The recent reappearance of urban violence
Appearance of urban violences and relatedIn spite of repression, at all times, the city indeed was the theater of violences. Thus, in a missive addressed to the mayor of London in 1730, the writer Daniel Defoe complains already that “ the citizens do not feel safe any more in their own walls, nor even while passing in the streets ”. The “ urban violences ” such as they were defined appear as for them completely clearly in the United States in the the Sixties, in France with beginning of the year 80, the remaining event of reference, in this country, the incidents of the summer 1981 with the Minguettes, a district of the suburbs is agglomeration Lyon is born with horse on three communes where nearly 250 cars will be destroyed by young people in the two months space. Thereafter, the other outstanding incidents in France will be those of Vaulx-in-Vellum in 1990 and Sartrouville and Mantes-the-Pretty in 1991. Following these incidents, urban violences will end up being perpetrated in a very regular way, with more small scales, such as for example with Strasbourg at the time of the festivals of the New year, or elsewhere, in Europe, after the matches of Football: the Hooliganisme develops truly in Europe only as from the Eighties. Become daily, urban violences take various forms then; against the goods or the people, they can be physical or Symbolique S. Of the fuller eruptions occurs on the occasion. Thus it is fine 2005 everywhere in France.
According to S. Body-Gendrot, with final, “ urban violence is observed in the majority of the modern societies. However, the demonstrations as the causes of this violence vary from one company to another ”, therefore “ it is false to believe that the urban violence to which one assists in France would be only the transposition of the situation which knows the United States”. “ In France, urban violence expresses more a loss of Confiance in the Institution S ”, and this one is all the more strong as the implication of these institutions in the integration was traditionally important. It aims especially the equipment and the public institutions, and through them, the State and its representatives. As Michel Kokoreff underlines it, the Tag S, for example, aim only little the private vehicles.
In addition to the Window S of the trade, the three main targets are:
- the school. During the school year 2002 - 2003, 72.507 cases of school violences was listed, including 1.581 physical violences with weapon. This figure also includes 21.003 physical violences without weapon and 16.623 insults or threats serious. The Racket account for 2,44% of the descriptions, violences with sexual character for 1,48%. To try to solve this problem, in the United States, 39% of the academies employ metal detectors at the entry of the establishments.
- the urban transport, whose armchairs are usually lacerated, the engraved panes, doors covered with tags. the SNCF only devotes to it five million euros annually to the cleaning of these tags. According to Sophie Body-Gendrot, “ so in the United States it is in the Parc S that the young people regulate their accounts, in Paris region, in fact the Autobus are the object of confrontations ”: “ the young people perceive the bus like their pertaining, since it rolls on their Territoire ”.
- the police force and the Fireman S, regularly taken with part or road-metals, deploring the every day of the insults to agent. With final, the fact that the supposed forces to maintain the order are thus among the first aimings rather paradoxically encourages to plead in favor of their withdrawal partial of the hot areas, so that the order is safeguarded there. It is a solution sometimes used in France, contrary to what occurs to the United States, with the Netherlands or the the United Kingdom, country where the humility of the police force is regarded as a weakness which accentuates the evil. In these countries, it is indeed the theory known as “ broken pane ” inspired by work of the social psychologist Philip Zimbardo in the Sixties who prevails: “ if a broken pane is not replaced, all the other panes will know the same fate ”. In other words, for many specialists resulting from these countries, it is necessary to reverse the generally allowed thesis, i.e. it is not the degradation of the Social link which is cause of incivilities, but the behavior of abandonment of the Citoyen S vis-a-vis these incivilities which precipitate délitement social link.
Causes of the appearance of urban violencesIf the explosions of urban violences are often started by Rumeur S of police Bavure or by some abuses of authority such as excavations considered as unjustified, the degradations and aggressions more generally made by the young people in the space of the city have several cross causes which become often their consequence in a series of vicious circles generating a Paupérisation:
- a family situation critical such as the Monoparentalité. The latter would authorize the relaxation of parental control on the young people, which is all the more critical in France that they cannot count on an effective monitoring of the Voisinage or community, contrary with what occurs to the United States.
- the school failure, which can itself rise from the family crisis. Thus, today, violence such as it emerges in the schools would betray a rejection of the institution, especially by the pupils in situation of school failure, who reproach him the Humiliation S undergone. The school difficulties and in professional insertion are badly felt by the second generation of the immigration, which aspired to a better statute than his/her parents and can too seldom concretize this hope; those which succeed leave the district. In fact, a certain number of researchers see in the massification of the enrolled pupils and the prolongation of the studies which took place in a context of high unemployment the causes of a loss of direction which generated the increased violence of the districts, for example F. Dubet and A. Peralva.
- the Unemployment, which nourishes itself of school failure. If it can generate violence, this one supports it in return, by creating territorial discriminations at the time of recruitment, or quite simply by destroying the goods which are used to create value, and thus Emploi S. the stigmatization of unemployment as a source of violence is however contestable, in particular because it is often based on the Discrimination perhaps too fast of the Oisiveté, which testifies to a certain way of a historical inversion of the principle according to which the working classes are dangerous classes.
- the development consequently of a parallel economy, in particular including the traffic of Drug S and the trade of various stolen materials. Competition between bands supported an increase in the circulation of weapons.
- the geographical absence of mobility the most stripped of. It tends to accentuate with the wire of the departures of most fortunate the one inescapable geographical caesura, possibly reinforced with the daily newspaper by a weak service road of the public Transports. The exiguity of the Logement S in which they are thus condemned to live (possibly with a Large family) pushes finally the young people to be tempted to adapt public space nearest, to seek to control joint big spaces as the flagstone or the strategic crossing points like the stair-wells or the halls. Once these acquired territories, they operate with a true marking, for example by means of tags, but also of a more strict control, by the means of illicit taking away of public or deprived goods, which they invite themselves “ to tax ”, which is a term of financial right which returns to the official monopoly to impose. Consequently, there would be an influence of the immediate environment on the production of violence, and in particular of the urban Architecture such as that of the great units, turns and other bars of the Sixties on the young people who live there.
- Of the practices known as deviating such as the Drug-addiction, practical which requires the installation of traffics whose protection often requires the recourse to violence.
- the possible consumption of televisual violence and video games violent one.
- the political absence of influence and the under-mediatization, which force with the recourse to violence those which want to be made hear. Violence and the force are not whereas a repertory of action as another but which has the advantage of being mobilizable at any moment.
- the Community conflicts religious, folds and possible rise of the Anti-semitism in cities which would be in the course of Islamisation, in any case in France.
- the ethnic racial discrimination and competitions which are legion there.
To these traditional explanations heavier causes quoted by Hugues Lagrange are added, of the causes who are perhaps more Culture them:
- a crisis of the Masculinity, which is itself related to the Mécanisation work which devalued the physical force. It supports sexual violences, or in any case the Misogynie, knowing that the countries of origin of the young immigrants violent one would be already little crossed by the feminist ideals . Violence and Virilité are associated here. The young women, victims of many attacks to their freedom of choice, obtained to a media recognition with Neither subjected whores nor.
- In the countries from where the are originating immigrant violent one, “ the rupture of the chains of the Vengeance was not secularized ”, contrary to what occurred in the crowned countries of Christian tradition like France according to Violence and the from Rene Girard. In the Mediterranean culture , for example, the interindividual conflict could not be thus regulated in a mediate way by the means of the Justice. However, this culture is based on an extensive definition of the “ mutual Respect ” or of the Honneur, and those thus appear soiled relatively often. Immediate violence thus emerges very quickly. From this point of view, according to Hugues Lagrange, violence is a search of recognition which should not be underestimated: “ violence implies a search of legitimacy which is essential for him. One makes violence only with what has the character to be it organized, by breaking glass not by breaking a rock. It is by destroying another intention - that which made glass - which violence seeks to be made recognize like anticreation ”.
In final, in France, according to the same author, “ the values of the young people who live in the districts of relegation take part of a syncretism which one has sometimes of the evil to seize: mix gregarious Individualisme consumerist and behaviors and Clan ists based on the defense of the territory and the honor of the group. This syncretism turns the back at the same time to the culture modest, patient, often resigned, of the Maghrebian immigrants, in particular , and with the values anticonsumerists, even idealistic, carried by a fraction of youth resulting from the middle-classes ”. In fact, according to other authors, they would have well a specific culture which emerged recently, the culture Hip-hop, which has its own codes. El the apparent paradox which makes that this culture seems to be baited to destroy its own framework of life would not be insurmountable. According to Sophie Body-Gendrot, “ this vandalism institutional is not new. It can take part of a “ collective bargaining by the riot ”, with the image of the operations of Sabotage which the Ouvrier S led to the century spent to make pressure on the Patronat ”.
The difficulty in proposing a public answer
Difficulties of intervention vis-a-vis urban violence itselfInsofar as the State is defined in the direction weberien like a company of monopolization of legitimate physical violence, the irruption of “ urban violences ” is particularly serious from the point of view of the policy: it calls in question the capacity of the official authority to defend the citizens, which is the base of the social pact, its promise. This is all the more true as the monopoly of violence by the State would be attacked on all the sides. Thus, according to Sebastian Roché, increase in the violence which one knows since the post-war period is not ascribable with a particular category individuals, but with the generalization of the aggressive behaviors in the various layers of the population. According to him, observations for example raised that good pupils practice also the racket outside the school.
According to the political economist, the State should thus bring a clear answer to the problem of the violence of the cities if there wants to remain credible. The solution oscillates sometimes between Répression and Prévention, with, in France, a strong accent over the second, in any case until recently. It in any case requires the intervention of a strong Justice. However, in France, like points out it Yves Michaud, violence is a notion very little used by the lawyers because rather badly defined in articles 309,310 and 311 of the Penal code. It also requires, as a Public policy, an effective evaluation, which means tool effective Statistique. However, this one would pose problem, in particular because it are used by these same which may find it beneficial to handle it, the police officers and the ministry for the Interior. It also poses a problem if it is not stable in time, as for example if one replaces surreptitiously, like recently in France, the observation of the number of lodged complaints by the rate of elucidation of the investigations which followed.
These problems can be circumvented by the introduction of qualitative analyzes of the forms of urban violence and their repression, within the framework of special programs. But all violences are not quantifiable. Also, for a few years, of the investigations of victimization have been realized for better apprehending the phenomena of violence qualitatively. They consist in questioning the people on the incidents of which they would have been victims and which they or not declared with the police force. These investigations exist of long time in the United States, and recently in France, within the framework of the International Crime off Victimization Survey .
In any case, several arguments are opposed here to the idea of a recent increase in urban violences, such as for example or existence the unreliability of statistical skews, the fact that an increase can translate a simple improvement of the collection of the complaints by the police force, or even a larger sensitivity of the individuals to the violence, which would incline them to carry felt sorry for more easily. It is also announced that the figures remain averages which can mask important geographical and social disparities. In fact, more than with an increase of violence, it is at a diversification of the victims and institutions concerned to which one would assist.
In general, currently, the fight against the “ urban violences ” takes several forms:
- reinforcement of the police presence in the hot areas by a redistribution of the forces towards those, which themselves are redefined, two movements which can involuntarily accentuate besides the destructuration of spaces concerned or the feeling of destructuration. The best equipment of the police officers which accompanies them could as for him make fear with the young people an intensifying of the control weighing already on them. On this subject let us recall following Michel Foucault that the Délinquance that is not built our companies which replaces old forms of illegalisms which could not, as for them, being controlled remotely, by far. This built by the means of the implementation new takes place average techniques and technological of monitoring. Today, the majority of the troublemakers possibly challenged afterwards incidents are already “ known ” police force before.
- Of the attempts at Positive discrimination in favor of the disadvantaged districts. In an article of the World dated from the November 18th 2003, Jean-Louis Borloo then deputy secretary at the city and the urban renovation in France declared: “ French specificity today in Europe, it is that the republican arrogance made us pass directly to the box “ Ghetto ”, without passing by the Community box which the principles of our Republic reject. This ghettoisation supports hatreds, much more than one Community system ”.
- urban renewal, more or less important according to the countries. In 2003, the total effort of France in favor of the policy of the city and urban social development represents only 5,7 billion euros, that is to say 0,36% of GDP. For comparison, the Germany devoted each year 3,5% of its GDP to the Réunification and the urban renewal which it implied during ten years.
The choice to fight against the effects of violences, in particular the feeling of insecurityContrary to the other types of civil violences, the “ urban violences ” have effects beyond their direct victims. As Yves Michaud mentions it, our relation with violent reality passes indeed only to some extent by the direct experiment that we have some: it also passes from now on by testimonys and information which we receive, in particular by the Médias, but also by the companies of Sécurité which have they also great interest to accentuate our perception of violence, because safety represents a consequent market. Thus creates for itself this paradoxical situation in which few people affirming to feel the ambient insecurity themselves were attacked. It is what one calls the feeling of insecurity. For the ones, such a feeling is initially the product of phantasms, in contradiction with the trend fall of violence in the modern societies. For others, such Sebastian Roché, it represent on the contrary an effective increase in the delinquency and criminality, as of a phenomenon little taken into account a few years ago: the Incivility S, whose study started in France only in the Années 1990, after the United States in the Seventies. The difficulty comes from what the statistics are unaware of legal incivilities such as impolitenesses, etc: they are interested only in illicit incivilities.
From the point of view of the policy, insofar as it touches the masses, the feeling of insecurity related to urban violences is perhaps more important than urban violences and degradations themselves, because it is the true force which determines the sedentary vote, beyond real violence. The policy thus seeks to measure it, then if required to make it also move back him, which can generate complex problems: is it necessary to place the police force where one needs some really with the risk to make fear an abandonment with the remainder of the population, or on the contrary to concentrate them where they play only one symbolic system part with the risk which the situation of the abandoned districts becomes unverifiable in their relative absence? In short, the fight against urban violences thus engages two cursors of which the movements partially are bound, but partially only, the first being that of real violence, the second of felt violence. While being based for example on the Democracy of proximity, the public policy of fight against urban violences ideal would be thus a mixture of action and representation which would be condemned to succeed only partially.
As Yves Michaud affirms it, “ the majority of the companies comprise sub-groups, whose level of violence is without common measurement with that of the company or, at least, with the common evaluations which prevail there: such is the case of the groups Militaire S, the gangs of young people or the teams Sport ives ”. Such is also the case of the young people who produce urban violence such as higher definite. In the groups which these young people form, violence would be even the standard: it would be well seen there to have made Prison. This passage crédibiliserait an individual and, by doing this, would allow him not to have recourse to direct physical violence more to be respected. Under these conditions of inversion of the standard, even the power struggles between the young people of the same group are violent fights, and that has enormous consequences on their surrounding space, which is also that of the thirds: on the city, its urban furniture, the urban transport, etc
As direct or indirect victims of these violences, the thirds suffer often much less inflicted pain that from their incapacity to react in a way appropriate to the violence which inflicts it, i.e. in fact, generally, by violence. Thus, most of the traumatisms from which they suffer after being attacked in one way or another concerns in fact their extreme loyalty with regard to the State, which them enjoint not to yield to violence even when this one is essential on them. They can consequently require authorities in return so that they feel as a Sacrifice a recognition which can institute them as a Victime S, victims possibly qualified to speak and act against the source of the violence which reached them. It would be there the ultimate challenge which urban violences with the public authorities pose. By degrading the framework of life of all, they would transform each one into producer of complaints to which the authorities will early have or to late answer if they do not want to lose the confidence of the citizens or them Obéissance.
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